The Masters 2013: Lee Westwood's putter keeps him in hunt after a sloppy start at Augusta

Briton starts with a bogey but claws back to a two-under finish in quest for a first major

Augusta National

The green jackets responsible for deciding the pairings were either trying to inspire Lee Westwood or twist a knife into his heart. The 39-year-old former World No 1 set off hoping for a fast start in pursuit of that elusive first major championship title at his 14th Masters and 60th major. His partners? Mike Weir and Jim Furyk, the Masters and US Open champions from 2003.

Westwood has reached the summit of the game and won more worldwide tournaments than the Canadian and American combined and yet Worksop's finest, now a Florida resident, must have glanced at his partners on the 1st tee and wondered how the hell they have triumphed at one of the four coveted titles and yet he is still stuck on zero. He turns 40 at the end of this month and Colin Montgomerie believes this is Westwood's last chance to avoid being, well, the new Colin Montgomerie with a career spent largely dominating the European Tour but falling agonisingly short at the history-making championships. Westwood has 13 top-10s in the majors and his last three finishes at the Masters have been third, 11th and second.

Tee to green, Westwood is one of the finest in the game. Chipping and putting have long been his Achilles heels. So driving his opening shot into the Augusta pine trees right of the first fairway was not exactly what Westwood had in mind over breakfast.

From there, among the pine needles, it got worse. His escape shot clattered into a tree trunk which brought it to a halt 20 yards short of the green, leaving him a nasty knee-trembling chip over one of Augusta's blindingly white sand bunkers. It came to a halt pin high just 10 feet from the cup. Perfect. And then gravity and the slope of the green did their deadly deed. There were gasps from the galleries and a grimace from Westwood as his ball trickled back down to the edge of the green. He chipped up to 12 feet and missed the putt. Double-bogey six. Disaster among the dogwoods.

But they make them tough in Worksop. Westwood thrashed his drive down the fairway of the par-five 2nd, which set up the opportunity for a two-putt birdie. One shot recovered. But there was more trouble at the 3rd. He committed the cardinal sin of taking an iron off the tee for safety then plopped his ball in a fairway bunker. It took a slippery 12-foot par saver to keep him from giving that birdie right back. He made a complete hash of the par-three 4th. He chipped through the green and holed an improbable 35-footer to save par. At least the putter was working.

Westwood dug in and returned to even par with a birdie at the 9th before finally getting his account into the red numbers at the 10th. Westwood now had control over his swing. Down in the cathedral bowl of the course, where the grandstands (sorry, bleachers) were packed and the oohs and aahs echo around the pines, turning Augusta into a golfing stadium, the par-five 13th and 15th holes coughed up two more birdies to take Westwood to three under par. Shame then, after grinding back from such a sloppy start, that he threw in a bogey at the 17th. Still, 70, two under par, not bad.

At least he had the pleasure of seeing his name writ large on the leaderboard as he climbed to the top of the hill to the 18th green. There he will have also seen the name of David Lynn at four under on his Masters debut.

So as the galleries swarmed after Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy, amid all the glamour of Augusta, it was two lads from Worksop and Stoke that had provided the morning's entertainment.

Arts and Entertainment
A bit rich: Maggie Smith in Downton Abbey
tvDownton Abbey review: It's six months since we last caught up with the Crawley clan
Frank Lampard and his non-celebration
premier leagueManchester City vs Chelsea match report from the Etihad Stadium
Arts and Entertainment
Jake Quickenden sings his heart out in his second audition
tvX Factor: How did the Jakes - and Charlie Martinez - fare?
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
premier league
Arts and Entertainment
'New Tricks' star Dennis Waterman is departing from the show after he completes filming on two more episodes
tvOnly remaining original cast-member to leave crime series
Mario Balotelli celebrates his first Liverpool goal
premier leagueLiverpool striker expressed his opinion about the 5-3 thriller with Leicester - then this happened
people'I hated him during those times'
Britain's shadow chancellor Ed Balls (L) challenges reporter Rob Merrick for the ball during the Labour Party versus the media soccer match,
peopleReporter left bleeding after tackle from shadow Chancellor in annual political football match
Arts and Entertainment
Female fans want more explicit male sex in Game of Thrones, George R R Martin says
tvSpoiler warning: Star of George RR Martin's hit series says viewers have 'not seen the last' of him/her
Dame Vivienne Westwood has been raging pretty much all of her life
peopleMemoir extracts show iconic designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Life and Style
fashionAlexander Fury's Spring/Summer 2015 London Fashion Week roundup
Arts and Entertainment
Lauryn Hill performing at the O2 Brixton Academy last night
musicSinger was more than 90 minutes late on stage in Brixton show
Rumer was diagnosed with bipolarity, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder: 'I was convinced it was a misdiagnosis'
peopleHer debut album caused her post-traumatic stress - how will she cope as she releases her third record?
people''Women's rights is too often synonymous with man-hating'
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam