Masters 2019: Tiger Woods makes strong start in first round at Augusta National

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bbc.comFour-time champion Tiger Woods hit a solid two-under-par 70 to sit one shot off the early clubhouse lead in the first round of the 83rd Masters.The American, 43, had four birdies and two bogeys to finish one adrift of the early clubhouse leaders.Spain's Jon Rahm, 2013 champion Adam Scott and South Africa's Justin Harding lead on three under at Augusta.
Rory McIlroy began his latest quest to win a first Masters with five birdies and six bogeys in a topsy-turvy 73.Tommy Fleetwood is the best Englishman in the clubhouse after a 71.
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Woods lurks after promising round
Woods bogeyed the par-four 17th after hitting his tee shot into the trees, and when he drove into a fairway bunker on the 18th, he looked to be heading for an untidy finish. However, he smashed his ball from the sand onto the green and two-putted from 30 feet.Prior to the 17th, there had been few dramas for the 14-time major champion, who last won here in 2005. His solitary bogey had come on the newly elongated par-four fifth after finding a fairway bunker with his tee shot.That dropped Woods back to level par but a birdie on the ninth was followed by successive birdies on the par-five 13th - the roar that greeted it echoing around Augusta National - and par-four 14th as he took a share of the lead.The last of Woods' 14 majors came at the 2008 US Open. Since then he has endured numerous injuries and has undergone surgery on his back four times.He returned to Augusta last year, finishing joint 32nd, and then showed a real return to form at The Open at Carnoustie, where he briefly led on the final day before finishing joint sixth.Woods then recorded his best closing round in a major of 64 to finish second in the US PGA Championship and capped off a terrific 2018 by winning the season-ending Tour Championship to end a victory drought of five years.And his score of 70 here in Augusta is the same total he recorded in the first round of his Masters victories in 1997, 2001 and 2002.
McIlroy made 'too many mistakes'

McIlroy had problems at the first hole but reached one under par after the 16thMcIlroy's round was bookended by scruffy bogeys. Following a wayward drive down the right on the first, he clattered his second into a tree and was unable to chip and putt for a par.And a missed par putt from five feet on the 18th, after a bogey on the 17th, saw the Northern Irishman finish a round that had flashes of promise, one over par.The 29-year-old told BBC Sport he made "too many mistakes". "I made six bogeys out there," he added. "I made enough birdies, I made five birdies, but I just made too many mistakes so I'm just going to go and address a couple of those little issues."It would have been great to shoot under par, (but) it's not as if anyone is getting away out there."Even though three under is only leading I thought the course was there. It's soft, you could take advantage of those conditions and I just didn't do that."I could be starting Friday a couple of shots better but I just have to get off to a good start and try to get myself back into red figures."
Rahm, Scott & Harding set the pace
Woods' playing partner Rahm got off to a quick start with birdies on the third and fourth holes but gave those shots back with bogeys on the fifth and eighth. However, a birdie on the ninth reignited his round and he cruised serenely round Amen Corner with a rare birdie on the 11th and another on the 13th before playing five holes of par golf to finish.Rahm shares the lead with Australian Scott, who birdied three of the final four holes to set the early pace alongside unheralded South African Harding who would have led on his own but for a bogey at the last.Defending champion Patrick Reed took advantage of the par-five holes on the back nine, eagling the 13th and birdieing the 15th, but also carded five bogeys as he opened with a one-over 73, the same score as 2017 champion Sergio Garcia.This report will be updated at the end of play
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