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Weir fades in second round and misses Masters cut

AUGUSTA, Ga. — For the third straight year, Mike Weir has missed the cut at the Masters at Augusta National Golf Club, where he won in 2003.

Weir, who has been battling a rib cartilage injury for the past three weeks, had been encouraged after an even-par 72 in Thursday’s opening round, but could never get it going in Friday’s second round.

The Sandy resident only had one birdie on the day and finished with a 7-over-par 79, while left him at 151, three shots off the cut line.

It was a repeat of last year’s tournament when Weir shot a second round 79 after a promising opening round 72.

“It wasn’t good,’’ he said. “It’s a tough place to play when you’re not 100 percent. I just couldn’t get loose, and on top of that I couldn’t make a putt.’’

A day earlier, Weir had put together an even par round even though he wasn’t swinging at full speed and often found himself 40 to 50 yards behind playing partners Lee Westwood and Jim Furyk off the tee.

On Friday, Weir started off with a bogey at the par-4 first hole and added a bogey at No. 9 to make the turn at 2-over 38. But disaster struck at No. 10 when he got in trouble and made double bogey. That put him on the apparent cut line of 4-over with eight holes left.

He was still OK after going bogey-birdie at 12 and 13, but a bogey at No. 14 put him at 5-over, which at the time was within 10 shots of the lead (anyone within 10 shots of the lead makes the cut).

However, at the par-3 16th, he hit his tee shot long into the rough and left his downhill approach 12 feet past. He needed the par putt to keep his hopes of making the cut alive, but the putt slid past.

He needed a birdie at 18, but hit his approach long, 60 feet past the pin on the upper level and his three-putt left him with his 79.

Weir had injured his ribs during the Arnold Palmer Invitational three weeks earlier and had to withdraw. He wasn’t even sure if he’d play before Wednesday and said he’d only played nine holes since suffering the injury.

“It’s like having a bad back,’’ he said. “You think you can work it out and get loose. I kept hoping the warm-up would get me loose, but it didn’t.’’

Weir has played in 14 straight Masters and before 2011 had only missed the cut once, in 2004 when he was the defending champion and missed by one shot.

MASTERS NOTES: The cut has been extended at this year's Masters to the low 50 players and ties after previously being low 44 and ties. … The only amateur to make the cut was China’s 14-year-old sensation Tianlang Guan, who finished with a 75 for a 148 total that included a one-stroke penalty for slow play. … T.J. Vogel, who qualified for the Masters by winning the U.S. Amateur Public Links at Soldier Hollow last July, shot a 75 Friday to finish at 152. … The best finishes of the day belonged to former champion Angel Cabrera of Argentina, who birdied five of the last six holes to finish within two shots of leader Jason Day, and Stewart Cink, who birdied the final four holes and made the cut by two shots. … Scott Piercy, who played briefly at BYU and is playing in his first Masters, played well with a 69 Friday and made the cut at 144.