Marathon ahead as DeChambeau leads, Woods looks for more Augusta magic

April 12, 2024 – 7:35 AM PDT

Bryson DeChambeau of the U.S. acknowledges the fans on the 18th hole during the first round REUTERS/Mike Segar
Bryson DeChambeau of the U.S. acknowledges the fans on the 18th hole during the first round REUTERS/Mike Segar

AUGUSTA, Georgia (Reuters) – The Masters was poised for a second round thriller on Friday with LIV Golf standard bearer Bryson DeChambeau sitting one shot clear of top-ranked Scottie Scheffler and Tiger Woods searching for some of his old major magic.


A marathon day at Augusta National began early with 27 golfers, including Woods, pulling double duty by finishing up weather-delayed first rounds before heading right back out onto a sun bathed layout.

With the first round complete, the stage is set for plenty of golfing drama up and down the leaderboard.

As always the spotlight will be on Woods as he bids for a record 24th consecutive made cut at Augusta National.

The winner of five Green Jackets, Woods has produced a long list of magical Masters moments and will need to conjure up one more after finishing his opening round on one-over 73.

Sitting at one-under through 13 holes, Woods made a tough assignment even more daunting with a bogey at the 14th, his first hole of the day, and closed out his opening round with another bogey at 18.

The 48-year-old is facing a challenge that is certain to test his will and injury-battered body.

Woods had played just 24 holes this year coming into the opening round and the 15-times major winner will try to play nearly as many in a single day as he eyes the Masters cut record and a sixth Green Jacket that he insists is within his reach.

At the top of leaderboard sit two of golf’s most intriguing figures, LIV Golf’s brash bomber DeChambeau and the soft-spoken Scheffler, who is dominating the PGA Tour with two wins and a runner-up finish in his last three starts.

DeChambeau used a sizzling burst of late birdies to muscle his way to seven-under 65 on Thursday while Scheffler also rode a late birdie blitz to card a bogey-free six-under-par 66.

Masters debutant Nicolai Hojgaard of Denmark and world number 11 Max Homa sit two shots behind the leader with 2016 Masters champion Danny Willett, making his first start since shoulder surgery in September, three off the pace.

World number two Rory McIlroy, in a high-profile group with Scheffler and Olympic champion Xander Schauffele, will look to build on his opening one-under 71 as the Northern Irishman makes a 10th attempt at completing a career Grand Slam of four majors.

Spaniard Jon Rahm, looking to become the fourth golfer to win back-to-back Green Jackets, will try to get his title defence on track after a lacklustre opening one-over 73.

Jordan Spieth, a Green Jacket winner and twice a runner-up, saw his hopes of reaching the weekend dented with a horrific finish to his opening round that included a quadruple bogey nine at the 15th that left him down the leaderboard at seven-over.

Reporting by Steve Keating in Augusta; Editing by Ken Ferris

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