American Campbell sets pace; Harrington, Woods in touch - Summary
Augusta, Georgia - American Chad Campbell enjoyed a small piece of Masters history Thursday and missed out on a bigger one as he set the pace on the first day of the opening major of the year. He became the first man ever to birdie each of the first five holes in the tournament, but after threatening to break the course record he had to settle for a 7-under-par 65.
That was enough to give him a one-shot lead over former US Open champion Jim Furyk and another American Hunter Mahan, while Shingo Katayama of Japan and veteran former Masters champion Larry Mize were a shot further back.
Open and US PGA champion Padraig Harrington, going for his third straight major victory, finished on 3-under-par, while tournament favourite Tiger Woods, chasing his 15th major win, bogeyed the last to shoot 70.
But two-time champion Phil Mickelson has work to do after a disappointing first-round 73, the same as Spaniard Sergio Garcia.
In perfect conditions and with the pins placed generously, the scoring was good, and Campbell threatened to rewrite the history books. He stormed to five-under-par through five holes, and then after a run of pars, birdied 12, 13, 14 and 15 to stand on the 16th tee at
The course record of 63, held by Greg Norman and Nick Price, looked there for the taking, but Campbell bogeyed the final two holes and eventually settled for a 65.
After a slow start, world No 1 Woods recovered from a bogey to get into red figures thanks to three straight birdies on the back nine.
The four-time Masters champion missed a short putt for birdie at the 17th and then compounded his error with a bogey at the last.
But he may not be too upset with a 70, for three of his four wins at Augusta came after recording the same score in round one.
"I left a couple of shots out there," Woods said.
"I didn't make anything in the first eight holes - I gave myself a lot of chances, but didn't take them. But I just hung in there and knew that the back nine could be had."
Harrington was relatively satisfied with his 69.
"It's a good start, probably not tremendous, but it's a nice start," the Irishman said.
"Thursday is all about staying in the event. Three-under is keeping me well in there. I do believe there was definitely a feeling on the course of urgency about the round, because there are only certain easy pins out there, and we seemed to get a lot of them today. It felt like a day you needed to make a few. You definitely felt like you wanted to shoot in the 60s."
South African Tim Clark, who is bidding to become the first man to ever go on to capture the Green Jacket after winning the par-three event - held on the eve of the tournament - fired a 68, while Ross Fisher was the leading Englishman after a fine 69 on his debut.
"I have been dreaming about playing in the Masters for such a long time," Fisher said. "The finish was disappointing, but if you score 69 at Augusta National, you are obviously doing something right."
Two-time champion Bernhard Langer, fellow 50-something and two- time Open champion Greg Norman of Australia - playing at Augusta for the first time since 2002 - and Englishman Lee Westwood all shot 70s.
Mickelson, though, had an uninspirational round. Having reached the turn in 1-under-par, he dropped shots at 11 and 16 to end on 1- over, eight behind Campbell.
The tournament was started by legendary American Arnold Palmer, who fulfilled the role as honorary starter.
But the first shot in anger was played by 1991 champion Ian Woosnam, who finished with a 2-over-par 74. (dpa)