When Rory McIlroy's game went into meltdown in the final round of the Masters in 2011, it seemed that it would be a long time before he could put himself in a position to win his first major. To lose from such a strong position after the first three rounds would surely have such a damaging effect psychologically that it would take him some time to recover.
I certainly felt this way. I thought it would play on his mind in future tournaments and that it could take up to two years before he would go on to break his major duck.
How wrong I was.
Ever since his Masters meltdown, the Irishman has been head and shoulders above every single golfer on the planet. He has won two majors, has risen to world No. 1 in the rankings, has won tournaments galore on both sides of the Atlantic, has starred in Europe's famous Ryder Cup comeback and has a glamorous girlfriend for good measure.
When he looks into his crystal ball for 2013, there must be one tournament that he wants to win more than any other, and that is the Masters. He will want one of those famous green jackets, and he has the ability to go out and grasp it.
His game is perfectly suited to the course at Augusta. He is consistently brilliant from the tee, and his short game has grown leaps and bounds in 2012. If he finds himself in contention at the halfway stage of the competition, there can surely only be one winner.
McIlroy will also want to win the Open in 2013, but he is reliant on the weather, as he doesn't possess the low-ball flight that would allow him to excel in the windy conditions of Links golf. He will have no such worries about the weather at Augusta, however, and will take full advantage.
He has a great chance to get somewhere near the record of the great Jack Nicklaus, but to do so, he really needs to be looking at winning one or two majors a year over the next three or four years to give himself the best chance.
What better way than starting at the Masters in 2013?
Like the new article format? Send us feedback!