Leishman takes early Round 1 lead at Masters

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AUGUSTA, Ga. – Anyone who knows an ounce of Masters history can tell you that an Australian has never donned the green jacket.

Marc Leishman is Australian. He shot 6-under 66 and leads the first round of the Masters.

Leishman, 29, watched his compatriot Greg Norman cough away the 1996 Masters against Nick Faldo. After playing his first Masters in 2010, Leishman said he could see how a round can quickly get away from a player, as it did Norman that fateful Sunday 17 years ago.


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That 2010 Masters start – his one and only – was short lived for Leishman. He shot 72-79 to easily miss the cut.

“The first time was a deer in headlights,” Leishman said Thursday. “I hit it in a lot of bad spots.”

The 2012 Travelers Championship winner hit it in a lot of good spots on Thursday at Augusta National. After bogey at the first hole, Leishman rattled off seven birdies in 17 holes, including a spurt of four in a row from Nos. 13-16.

“It felt good to get on a roll,” Leishman said. “I hit some good shots, made some reasonably easy pars. That’s what gave me the confidence from there.”