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April 8 2013

1:20 PM

Colsaerts hopes to learn from Nicklaus

Colsaerts is just the third player from Belgium to play in the Masters (Redington/Getty Images)

By Brian Wacker, PGATOUR.COM

AUGUSTA, Ga. -- Nicolas Colsaerts was hanging around the clubhouse at The Bear's Club in West Palm Beach, Fla., last week when someone noticed Jack Nicklaus Jr. in the room and asked him what advice he would give to someone playing his first Masters.

Nicklaus Jr., on the bag for his father Jack's win here in 1986, paused for a moments and said, "I would just talk to Dad."

Jack Jr. then turned to Colsaerts and asked if he'd like him to call the six-time Masters champion.

"I'm like, 'Yeah, if that's a possibility that would be awesome," Colsaerts exclaimed. An hour later, Colsaerts and the Golden Bear were having lunch.

What did the 30-year-old Belgian making his first trip down Magnolia Lane learn from Nicklaus?

Plenty.

"It's funny how when I spoke to Jack about the place, I felt like I had the place, you know, pretty good screened up for somebody that's never played here," he said. "So if you add some of the useful information he's given me, it's actually given me quite a confidence boost."

The last player to win the Masters in his first appearance was Fuzzy Zoeller in 1979. He is one of just three players to have done so (Gene Sarazen and Horton Smith were the others).

"We pretty much spoke about every hole," Colsaerts said. "He told me about a few pin positions and a few shots that you might need to hit and the ones you don't want to hit.

"Usually when you play courses, you don't really think about the shots you don't want to hit; not as much as here. Here, it takes such a bigger part of your tactical approach to the course."

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