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Cam Smith is one of 13 players using this week’s LIV Golf event in Miami as a warm-up for Augusta National. 

Last year, 18 LIV players teed it up at the Masters, but there will be a smaller contingent from the Saudi-backed circuit heading to Georgia in pursuit of a Green Jacket.

Scottie Scheffler is the overwhelming favourite, but Smith is among the leading names who could stop the dominant world No.1 from winning the first major of the season.

The Australian has had a mixed start to 2024, but his record at Augusta is impressive. With three top-five finishes in his seven outings, Smith knows he has the game to challenge for his second major title.

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And ahead of this year’s renewal, Smith and his LIV colleagues feel an alteration to their schedules could improve their chances.

“Last year we only got to play three events before the Masters,” he explained. “This will be our fifth event this week before the Masters. It’s definitely one of the things we spoke about as a whole group.

“So, it’s a little bit more tournament time just being competitive. It will help a lot in itself, but also just obviously picking the clubs up a little bit earlier.

“There was a few things that needed to change and they (LIV) changed it, so it’s been great for us.”

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There is added importance on this Masters for Smith given his Olympic aspirations.

The 30-year-old has made no secret of his desire to represent Australia at the Paris Games this summer, but knows that he only has a few tournaments where he can boost his world ranking and qualify for the team.

As it stands, Jason Day, Min Woo Lee, Adam Scott and Cameron Davis are all above world no.62 Smith in the Aussie standings.

“It’s desperately a place that I want to get to and represent Australia,” Smith said. “I have to play well to get there, I know I have to play well, and I’m probably only going to get three or four shots at it before they make the selection. I guess it is more pressure.”

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Ben Parsons joined bunkered as a Content Producer in 2023 and is the man to come to for all of the latest news, across both the professional and amateur games. Formerly of The Mirror and Press Association, he is a member at Halifax Golf Club and is a long-suffering fan of both Manchester United and the Wales rugby team.

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