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Masters Tournament 2021: Complete Coverage

Honorary Starter Lee Elder of the United States (L), waves to the crowd as he is recognized and honorary starter and Masters champion Gary Player of South Africa and honorary starter and Masters champion Jack Nicklaus look on from the first tee during the opening ceremony prior to the start of the first round of the Masters at Augusta National Golf Club on April 08, 2021 in Augusta, Georgia.

Complete live Masters coverage throughout the day, including photos, live leaderboard and more.

Refresh this page throughout the day for live blog coverage of the 2021 Masters. The live leaderboard is available here, or under the live blog coverage below.

Day 1 Complete

It was an interesting day on the course at Augusta National. With dry, fast greens, and wind kicking up in the afternoon, scores predictably stayed close to even par – for the most part.

The notable exception is of course the leader in the clubhouse, Justin Rose. His remarkable turnaround of 9-under over his last 11 holes has him firmly in first, four shots clear of second place currently. There’s still a lot of golf to be played however, and many a first-round leader has seen things unravel quickly on Day 2.

At the bottom of the leaderboard were some predictable names, like Larry Mize and Sandy Lyle who are just happy to still get some time on the Masters course. Two of the three amateurs in the field are down near the bottom as well.

But there are big names down there too. Like Bryson DeChambeau, Rory McIlroy, Sergio Garcia and Ian Woosnam who are 4-over and tied for 60th. Lee Westwood is 6-over and tied for 75th. Phil Mickelson is 3-over.

They’ll be back at it tomorrow. Take a look at the gallery from today’s memorable first round here.

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6 p.m. – Fleetwood Nails Hole-in-One

An otherwise forgettable day for Tommy Fleetwood suddenly got very memorable on the historic 16th.

Fleetwood hit his drive just onto the front edge of the green and rolled it directly into the hole. It was just the 23rd hole-in-one in Masters history.

Fleetwood is still 2-over on the day, tied for 35th currently.

Oh, and that Justin Rose guy? He keeps making birdies. He’s now SEVEN UNDER and playing the final hole.

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5:30 p.m. – Justin Rose Surging

We said 3-under was the locked in low number for the day. Turns out maybe we were wrong.

Justin Rose, who was 2-over through 7 holes, has gone on a tear. He’s now 5-under through 15 holes after an eagle on 8, birdie on 9, birdie on 10, birdie on 12, birdie on 13 and birdie on 15. With three holes to play, it looks like we may have our first-round leader in place.

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4:15 p.m. – Scoring Conditions Getting Worse

As we predicted earlier, nobody is moving up the leaderboard anymore. The winds are up and the greens are fast.

Bryson DeChambeau also got another bogey, so he’s 4-over now.

Brian Harman and Hideki Matsuyama are tied atop the leaderboard at 3-under, with a pack of golfers at 2-under in the clubhouse. Only Justin Rose on the course is within one shot of the leaders. He’s 2-under through 10 after a wild swing of bogeys and birdies.

Defending champion Dustin Johnson stopped making his move and lipped out a putt on 18 to end his round with a 2-over 74. That’s still in the hunt, but not the start he wanted.

Phil Mickelson is quietly 1-over through his front nine, after a birdie on 2 and bogeys on 7 and 8.

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3 p.m. – DeChambeau Blasting His Way Out of Contention

Bryson DeChambeau got a lot of attention for his increase in strength and power before the November Masters. And he faired poorly with the new approach. Looks like things aren’t going any better this time around.

DeChambeau has a double bogey on 4 and a bogey on 5, so he’s already 3-over. That’s not gonna cut it this week.

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2:15 p.m. – Dustin Johnson Making a Move

A wobbly first few holes had defending champion Dustin Johnson struggling for a while. But he’s striking back.

Johnson is now 1-under through 13 holes, after birdies on 11 and 13. Watch out.

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2 p.m. – Well Hello Brian Harman

Brian Harman is playing in his third Masters, but has never finished above 44th. Maybe the native Georgian is on his way to something bigger, as he’s now the leader in the clubhouse.

Harman quietly parred his way through the first 8 holes, but four birdies and a bogey in his final 10 holes has him now 3-under with a 69 in the clubhouse.

One shot back of him in the clubhouse is Will Zalatoris, making his Masters debut. Zalatoris had a wild round with four bogeys, an eagle and three birdies.

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1:30 p.m. – Speaking Of Rory Struggling…

Things are so rough for Rory McIlroy today that he HIT HIS OWN DAD! Take a look.

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1:15 p.m. – Nerves Are High As Temps Rise

We’re still 45 minutes away from the last tee times for today’s opening round. And for those not on the course yet, there may be reason for concern. As the temperature is rising, and the winds are starting to increase a bit, scoring conditions aren’t going to get any better.

Twelve players are currently under par in their first rounds, while 38 are over par. Nobody ever expected National would give up the strokes like it did in November, of course.

On top right now, Hideki Matsuyama, Si Woo Kim and Christian Bezuidenhout are 3-under. And as we type this, Australian Marc Leishman got his third birdie in the first four holes to join them at 3-under.

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12:45 a.m. – Rory Struggling In Opening Round Again

After an opening-round 75 in the November Masters, Rory McIlroy rebounded to finish in the top 5. He’s likely going to need another miracle to pull off being in contention.

McIlroy is 3-over through seven holes, after bogeys on 5, 6 and 7.

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11:55 a.m. – Wild Swings for Hovland, Swafford, Matsuyama

Hudson Swafford started strong, but fell apart. He was 2-under through 9 holes before bogeys on 10, 12 and 14 sent him to 1-over. He did manage to nearly hole out an eagle on 15 to help get back to even par though.

On the other end of the spectrum, Viktor Hovland started awful with a TRIPLE bogey on the first. But he’s got birdies on 2, 3 and 6 now to get things back to a more comfortable even par.

But hello Hideki Matsuyama! As we typed this, he drilled a massive second shot on the par-5 8th hole and dropped a good 30-foot eagle putt to shoot to the top of the leaderboard at 3-under.

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11:15 a.m. – Bogey-Birdie Start for DJ

Our defending champion, Dustin Johnson, had a rocky start with a bogey on the first. He put his tee shot in the first cut of rough, and sailed his second shot over the green. That left a difficult pitch that sailed well past the hole. Two putts later he settled in for bogey.

But on the more forgiving par-5 second hole, he birdied to get things back in order.

Si Woo Kim, Abraham Ancer and Christian Bezuidenhout or on top of the leaderboard at 2-under currently.

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10:15 a.m. – Big Names Hitting the Course Now

We’re getting some of the big names and/or major contenders for the title this year on the course now.

Bubba Watson, Brooks Koepka and Viktor Hovland are all wrapping up their first hole right now. (Hovland just double bogeyed. Rough start. … Koepka and Watson each had a par.)

Webb Simpson, Sergio Garcia and Christian Bezuidenhout all just teed off on 1.

And on deck is defending champion Dustin Johnson, grouped with Lee Westwood and amateur Tyler Strafaci from Georgia Tech, the 2020 U.S. Amateur champion.

Names like Xander Schauffele, Jon Rahm, Rory McIlroy, Paul Casey and Patrick Reed are coming up soon as well.

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10:05 a.m. – Kim Starts Hot, Joins Swafford Up Top

It’s early, but Si Woo Kim has started strong, with birdies on the second and third holes to join Hudson Swafford on top at 2-under.

Kim skirted the bunkers on the third fairway, and then knocked his approach to inches away for the tap-in birdie. The South Korean has never finished in the top 20 in four previous Masters starts.

(We jinxed him…he’s got a difficult putt on 4 to avoid his first bogey. Let’s see how that goes. … Oops. He missed the putt. Sorry Si Woo, this one is our fault.)

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9:35 a.m. – Crash Back to Earth for Frittelli

South African Dylan Frittelli had a magical run at Augusta National back in the unusual November 2020 Masters, finishing in a tie for fifth place. He led after the first round and played a great tournament all around.

Well, what Augusta National gives, it very quickly takes away. Through six holes today, Frittelli has four bogeys and is ahead of only Sandy Lyle on the leaderboard.

On the other end of the spectrum, Bernhard Langer became the oldest player ever to make the cut at the Masters in November. Today, he’s even par through four holes, after a par-bogey-birdie-par start.

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9:10 a.m. – Quite a Start for Sandy Lyle

The day started well for 1988 Masters champion Sandy Lyle. He casually teed off in an unzipped windbreaker and settled in for a nice par on the first. And a birdie on 2 had him briefly on top of the leaderboard.

But it hasn’t been sunshine and roses since then. A bogey on the third brought him back to even par. And then disaster struck on the fourth.

His tee shot on the Par 3 went into the green-front bunker. His second shot sailed over the bunker into the azaleas out of bounds. His fourth shot after the drop went over the green. His fifth shot was a wildly pissed putt from the fringe. His sixth shot skirted the hole. And finally he tapped in for the quadruple bogey 7 on the Par 3. He’s now +5 for the day.

He took off the jacket in time to tee off on the fifth… but placed his tee shot in the rough to the left of the fairway.

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8:50 a.m. – GALLERY: Lee Elder, First Black Man to Play In the Masters

GALLERY: Lee Elder Serves as Honorary Masters Starter

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8:31 a.m. – Swafford Notches First Birdie of the Day

We promise it won’t be a long list of the first time something happens today on the live blog, but it’s always nice to see a red number on the board. Former Georgia Bulldog Hudson Swafford has moved to 1-under thanks to a lucky bounce off a patron chair into the pine straw rough on the par-5 second hole. Thanks to the fortunate landing spot, he was able to hit a beautiful second shot just short of the green, chipped up close and nailed his birdie putt.

Playing partner Michael Thompson also birdied the second hole, helping him recover from the opening bogey to get back to even par.

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8:28 a.m. – Watch Out For the Wind

The PGA Tour Communications office issued the Thursday weather forecast, and it’s not great news for the afternoon golfers. Wind gusts this afternoon could hit 20 mph, and that will make things VERY interesting.

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8:15 a.m. – Our First Scores Are Up

The first group has finished up the first hole, and we technically have a live leaderboard now. Hudson Swafford had a two-putt for par on the first. While Michael Thompson recovered from the fairway bunker, and a second shot over the green to notch just a bogey.

On the first hole now are Sandy Lyle, Matt Jones and Dylan Frittelli (who happened to hold a share for the lead after the first round in November’s Masters).

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7:55 a.m. – Round 1 Underway With Honorary Starters

Three legends of the game got the festivities started, as Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player tee off with the incomparable Lee Elder.


Additional Coverage

Masters Tournament 2021: Complete Coverage

A special thanks to our friends at Augusta National Golf Club.

Brandon Plotnick is a former sports journalist, now living in the digital space with interests all over the musical and pop culture map.