July 20, 2019

Woods Starts Strong at Augusta, and Shoots a Familiar Score

Woods Starts Strong at Augusta, and Shoots a Familiar Score

Afterward, Woods smiled easily and seemed to be enjoying the attention. But in his 22nd Masters, Woods knew how much more golf there was left to play.

“We still have a long way to go,” he said. “I tee off late tomorrow, and the wind’s supposed to be up, so I have my work cut out for me the rest of the week. But so does everyone else.”

Several golfers who teed off Thursday morning, like Woods, had strong rounds, including John Rahm, who finished with a three-under-par 69. Also at three-under was the former Masters champion Adam Scott and South African Justin Harding, who was playing in his first Masters.

Harding appeared a bit awed by his first-round result.

“Yeah, I’ll take it and run if I can,” he said, then added: “Oh, wait, we’re not allowed to run here at Augusta.”

Walking only is a rule at Augusta National, for spectators and players.

“Let’s just say I’m pleased,” Harding said.

Rickie Fowler, last year’s Masters runner-up, was tied with Woods at two-under par as were six other golfers, including Gary Woodland, J.B. Holmes and Corey Conners, the winner of last weekend’s Valero Texas Open.

Defending champion Patrick Reed shot a one-over-par 73, as did the 2017 Masters champion, Sergio Garcia.

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