Tree falls at Augusta as Masters play suspended due to weather

Two pine trees fell near patrons during storms at Augusta on Friday, and another tree fell elsewhere, though nobody was injured as the second round of The Masters was suspended.

The storms had been expected throughout the day, and tournament officials moved all starting times up 30 minutes in the hope of getting the second round in as scheduled.

The morning dawned hot and humid, with plenty of sun, but it gave way to ominous clouds churning through from the east shortly after the lunch hour.

The course had already been cleared once for 21 minutes when the first band of storms passed through the area, and the air horn sounded again at 4.22pm local time as another set of storms arrived, bringing heavy rain and the threat of lightning.

About the time the horns sounded, two enormous pines fell near the 17th-tee box, sending the patrons in the area scattering for cover. Workers quickly arrived with chainsaws to begin clearing the fallen trees.

There were immediate concerns that patrons may have been hurt, but it quickly became apparent that those in the area had had a lucky escape, with an official statement confirming the news.

The statement read: "Augusta National Golf Club can confirm that no injuries were reported from three trees that were blown over to the left of the No 17 tee due to wind.

"The safety and well-being of everyone attending the Masters tournament will always be the top priority of the club. We will continue to closely monitor weather today and through the tournament.

"The second round has been officially suspended for the rest of the day. Play will resume Saturday morning at 8am EDT. Ticket gates will open at 7am EDT as scheduled."