Will Zalatoris Excels at 2023 Masters Tournament Despite Setbacks

Experience Will Zalatoris’ remarkable comeback at the 2023 Masters Tournament amidst challenges, setbacks, and redemption. Witness his poise, determination, and gratitude as he competes at Augusta National with renewed vigor.

On the eve of the 2023 Masters Tournament in Augusta, GA, rising star Will Zalatoris arrived at Augusta National’s practice putting green, reflecting on his journey in the golfing world. The 26-year-old golfer, known for both triumphs and setbacks, was poised to seize the moment ahead.

Zalatoris, the runner-up at the 2021 Masters, had to withdraw from last year’s tournament just before his opening round due to a persistent back injury. This difficult decision cast uncertainty on his future, but now, after 12 months, the Texan returned to the cherished course, determined to compete once again.

Facing the challenging winds that swept through the legendary fairways, Zalatoris felt an unexpected tranquility. Speaking to his longtime coach, Josh Gregory, he expressed, “I never thought I would be at the Masters and not be really nervous. I’m just so happy and excited to be here.” This shift in mindset highlighted the growth he experienced during his challenging road to recovery.

In the opening round on Thursday, Zalatoris displayed composure in the tough conditions, posting a score of 70 to trail leader Bryson DeChambeau by five shots before play was halted due to darkness. His round featured seven pars on the front nine, along with birdies on the par 5s. Noteworthy were an eagle on the 13th hole and a closing birdie on the 15th, offsetting a couple of late bogeys.

Reflecting on his resilience, Zalatoris acknowledged the mental and physical obstacles he had conquered. He shared, “A year ago, I could feel the disk slipping, and I was kind of hiding it from everybody, including members of my team. It’s hard not to be grateful being here, but I’m even more grateful now.”

Gregory, witnessing Zalatoris’ journey firsthand, commended his athlete’s strength, stating, “He’s (four) months into his comeback and he’s already contended in two tournaments and he’s back at the Masters, a place he loves more than anything. This is house money.”

Embracing the privilege of competing at the highest level, Zalatoris looked forward to scripting the next chapter of his golfing adventure at the 2023 Dell Technologies Match Play.

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