The cash cow is back. Somewhere, Paddy Power is cowering in a dark corner, while William Hill says his prayers, both knowing full well that the world and its mother are lobbing money on Tiger Woods to win the Masters.
His recent Bay Hill win returned him to world number one status, a position he held for much of the past 16 years, only to lose it 29 months ago after serious zipper issues.
Now, with a new blonde on his arm and a renewed swagger, he is sniffing more majors to add to his total of 14. His win in the Arnold Palmer Invitational meant he had picked up six trophies in 20 PGA tour starts, and is gunning for a fifth US Masters at Augusta.
It may look a little more inevitable than it actually is. Phil Mickelson will fancy a third Masters title in seven years, while England’s Justin Rose arrives in Georgia as the newly anointed world number three.
I’ll obviously be cheering on my homeboy Rory McIlroy, one of the best golfers and worst actors on the planet. If only Nicholas Cage could play golf, the similarities would be remarkable.
Golf: the Masters, from Augusta – Thursday from 7pm on Sky Sports 1 or 9pm on Radio 5 Live
Coups in the oval office
Saracens lead rugby’s Premiership, but they face the toughest of tests in the quarter-finals of the European Cup against last year’s losing finalists, Ulster. In another Anglo-Irish clash, Munster, who may be still without the almost-fit Paul O’Connell, will need to pull off a real coup at the stoop.
Rugby union: European Cup quarter-finals, Saracens v Ulster – Saturday from 6pm (k/o 6.30pm) on Sky Sports 1; Harlequins v Munster – Sunday from 1.30pm (k/o 2pm) on Sky Sports 2
Playing for pride
If people do still physically circle dates in their diaries, then surely last summer pens would have been put to paper at the prospect of the Manchester derby. Eight months later, instead of being a close-run climax to the title race, it could be the final nail in the coffin for the defending champions. Still, at least there’s still something to play for at the bottom. Ho hum.
Premier League Football: Manchester United v Manchester City – Mon from 7pm (k/o 8pm) on Sky Sports 1
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