Justin Rose steals the show at Augusta; Man United find right frequency in Granada
The Morning Sports Briefing: Keep ahead of the game with ‘The Irish Times’ sports team
Justin Rose celebrates with his caddie David Clark after his opening round of 65 in the US Masters. Photograph: Kevin C Cox/Getty
Justin Rose has a four-stroke lead in the US Masters, after he posted a stunning opening round of 65 on a difficult day of scoring at Augusta National. Rose had got off to a slow start and was two over par through seven holes, but an eagle on the eighth sparked something inside the 2013 US Open winner, and a further seven birdies moved him to seven under par and earned him an imposing early lead in the year’s first Major. Only 12 of the field are under par after a tough first round, and among them is Ireland’s Shane Lowry who produced a very tidy 71 to leave himself firmly in the mix. With the greens fast and firm at Augusta many big names struggled however, including Rory McIlroy, whose opening 76 already leaves his hopes of a maiden Masters win in the balance. He wasn’t alone, with Bryson DeChambeau also signing for a 76 and defending champion Dustin Johnson a 74, with conditions a world away from when he put on the green jacket last November. Today Lowry tees off at 2.36pm in his second round with McIlroy off at 6.48pm - you can follow all of the action via our liveblog from around 2pm.
Manchester United have one foot in the semi-finals of the Europa League, after they were convincing 2-0 winners away to Spanish side Granada last night. Marcus Rashford opened the scoring in Andalusia with a well taken goal just after the half hour mark - his 20th of the season. Bruno Fernandes then doubled United’s lead with a 90th minute penalty, giving Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side an imposing lead to take back to Old Trafford next week. Meanwhile Arsenal were held to a 1-1 draw at the Emirates in the first leg of their tie with Slavia Prague. Nicolas Pepe looked to have given the Gunners a narrow victory in the 86th minute but Tomas Holes equalised in the 94th minute to hand the Czech side the advantage ahead of next Thursday’s second leg. There is one Premier League fixture tonight, with Fulham welcoming Wolves to Craven Cottage (8pm).