US Masters Round 1 dominated by Americans but Ian Poulter is right in the mix


Koepka And DeChambeau In Charge After US Masters Round 1

Americans Brooks Koepka and Bryson Dechambeau lead the Masters after finishing on six-under-par on day 1 at Augusta.

Koepka set the pace producing the only bogey-free round of the day, but his compatriot conjured up six birdies in the final seven holes to draw level.

The self-styled golfing scientist’s storming finish included a near hole-in-one at 16 and he then hit the flag with his second at 18.

Koepka had received some criticism earlier in the week for revealing a drastic new diet, but the three-time Major winner didn’t show any signs of weakness as he played the back nine in five-under.

Americans dominate the top of the leaderboard, with the ever-popular Phil Mickelson sitting one back of the leaders.

Lefty will become the oldest ever Major champion if he takes home his fourth Green Jacket this week.

Related: US Masters Betting Tips

Ian Poulter and Dustin Johnson are a further shot back on four-under with the Englishman posting birdies on 13, 15 and 16 to put him in the mix.

As for the other Europeans, it wasn’t such a good day for pre-tournament favourite Rory McIlroy, who finished with two bogeys to end on one-over.

World Number One Justin Rose was another one to struggle, finishing on three-over but one of the biggest surprises came from Paul Casey.

The Englishman was in great form coming into Augusta and was tipped by many to challenge this week, but he had a terrible day finishing on nine-over-par.

Tiger Woods is in contention after a very decent two-under-par 70, but it does mean he has still only posted a round in the 60s once on an Augusta Thursday.

Augusta National had thrown in a few surprise pin positions which were predicted to keep scoring quite tight today, but that theory was blown away by the late starters, who dominate the top of the leaderboard.

Related: Masters Leaderboard

The players enjoyed perfect conditions today but the weather is set to play more of a part in the coming days with rain forecast on and off for the rest of the tournament.