Finau defies ankle injury to take stunning Masters lead

Having injured his ankle on Wednesday, Tony Finau made the most of his recovery by moving into the lead at The Masters.

Tony Finau at Augusta   -  Getty Images

Tony Finau continued a remarkable Masters story, which looked in serious jeopardy as early as Thursday morning, by moving into the lead at Augusta towards the closing stages of round one.

The big-hitting American dislocated his ankle celebrating a hole-in-one during the par-three contest on Wednesday, before seemingly popping it back in himself.

Having been cleared to tee off, Finau made an inauspicious start with a bogey at the first but birdies at the second, fourth, eighth, ninth and 13th holes lifted him to four under par with five holes to play.

Charley Hoffman, who was leading by four strokes after the completion of round one 12 months ago, and Adam Hadwin each bogeyed the last to finish at three under par for their round.

That was a score matched by their playing partner Patrick Reed, while Henrik Stenson also dropped a shot at the last to finish his opening round one off the lead held by Finau.

Tiger Woods, back at Augusta for the first time since 2015, escaped with an one-over 73 after grinding impressively. 

The four-time winner was three over after back-to-back bogeys at the 11th and 12th, but late birdies at the 14th and 16th kept him in contention.

Woods' playing partner Marc Leishman had set the early pace, but finished the day two under after finding the water to make seven at the par-five 15th.

Among the later starters, Rory McIlroy – looking to complete a career Grand Slam – was one under through 10, Jordan Spieth was two under after nine, Phil Mickelson was even par and Dustin Johnson was two over.

Defending champion Sergio Garcia's charge is almost certainly over, though. The Spaniard equalled the record for the worst score on a hole at the Masters with a shocking 13 at the par-five 15th and finished nine over.