2021 Masters: Despite uneven schedule, Jon Rahm shoots even-par round on Day 1

AUGUSTA, Ga. – In his first round as a father, Jon Rahm avoided the pitfalls that seemed to be looming everywhere on a breezy Thursday at the Masters and finished his day with an even-par 72 that left him tied for 13th place.

Rahm and his wife, Kelley, had the couple’s first child, Kepa Cahill, last Sunday and the Spaniard didn’t arrive at Augusta National until Wednesday. Despite his limited preparation, Rahm said he was pleased with his play on Day 1.

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“I would say nothing outstanding but nothing bad,” he said. “The only thing I could have probably just touch on is – hopefully get better throughout the week – is my pace on the greens, but everybody struggled. Rory [McIlroy] struggled. Xander [Schauffele] struggled. I struggled.”

Rahm’s struggles on the greens where understandable given his limited preparation and how the course has firmed up since Monday.

Rory McIlroy shot 76 to begin again his quest for the career Grand Slam. But McIlroy was still able to find some positives.

“I was playing with Ryan [Palmer] and Scottie [Scheffler] on Wednesday, and they were telling me how firm it was the day before and how it was playing a little softer and slower. I didn’t know what to gather,” Rahm said. “One putting green was one speed, the course was one speed. I was like, you know what, I’ll try to go and rest up and tee off tomorrow.”

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