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McIlroy, Quiros lead foreign contingent at Masters

Thursday, April 07, 2011

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Rory McIlroy roared to an opening 7-under-par 65 in the morning and finished the first round of the Masters Tournament tied with Spaniard Alvaro Quiros, who closed with three birdies down the stretch.

Rory McIlroy walks onto the No. 17 green during the first round of the Masters golf tournament at Augusta National. (Rainier Ehrhardt/Staff)

McIlroy, the 21-year-old Irishman, making his third Masters appearance, recorded his first round in the 60s. He posted seven birdies and no bogeys. McIlroy hit 14 of 18 greens and needed just 26 putts to get around.

Quiros ran into tree trouble at No. 14, but he saved bogey. He then birdied Nos. 15 and 17 to get to 6-under entering the final hole. Quiros knocked his approach shot to three feet. He calmly drained the putt to tie for the lead.

McIlroy and Quiros will enter Friday's action up two shots over the Korean duo of Y.E. Yang, 2009 PGA Championship winner, and K.J. Choi.

Matt Kuchar and Ricky Barnes lead the American contingent, each carding 68. Seven players are tied at 69, including Masters champion Trevor Immelman and first-timer Gary Woodland.

Nine of the top 13 players on the leaderboard are international players,

Defending champion Phil Mickelson recorded his lone bogey of the day at the final hole for 70. He is tied for 14th place.

Spain's Alvaro Quiros stands in a tie for the lead with Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland. (Associated Press)

Four-time Masters champion Tiger Woods shot 71 after carding 36 on the back nine.

World No. 1 Martin Kaymer of Germany struggled to an opening 78. Englishman Lee Westwood, No. 2 in the world, shot 72.

Dustin Johnson, a popular pre-tournament favorite, struggled on the front nine and finished with 74. Other popular Americans, include: Nick Watney (72), Anthony Kim (73) and Bubba Watson (73)

Peter Uihlein drained a 20-foot birdie putt at No. 18 to get to even-par. The reigning U.S. Amateur champion is tied at 72 for low amateur with David Chung and Hideki Matsuyama.

Retief Goosen recorded the shot of the day, with his eagle at the par-4 first. He knocked in his approach shot from 161 yards.

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