Bryson DeChambeau of the U.S. salutes the crowd after finishing on the 18th hole. Photo: REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
Bryson DeChambeau of the U.S. salutes the crowd after finishing on the 18th hole. Photo: REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
Brooks Koepka of the U.S. celebrates a birdie on the 13th hole during first round play of the 2019 Masters. Photo: REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
Brooks Koepka of the U.S. celebrates a birdie on the 13th hole during first round play of the 2019 Masters. Photo: REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

AUGUSTA – Americans Brooks Koepka and Bryson DeChambeau each fired a six-under par 66 on Thursday to share the lead after the opening round of the 83rd Masters at Augusta National.

Dechambeau birdied six of the last seven holes, including the final four in a row, and finished with a spectacular shot, his second shot at the par-4 18th from 195 yards hitting the flagstick and stopping inches from the cup for a tap-in birdie.

Three-time major winner Koepka, the 2017 and 2018 US Open champion who also captured last year's PGA Championship, began the back nine with a birdie and ran off four more in a row from the par-3 12th to the par-5 15th.

Phil Mickelson, trying to become the oldest major champion in history at age 48, fired a 67 to stand third, matching his first-round score from the most recent of his three Masters triumphs in 2010.

Sharing fourth on 68 were England's Ian Poulter and world number two Dustin Johnson of the United States.

A pack sharing sixth on 69 included 2013 Masters winner Adam Scott of Australia, Spain's Jon Rahm, South African Justin Harding, American Kevin Kisner and Thailand's Kiradech Aphibarnrat.

Agence France-Presse (AFP)