Golf: Kiwi Ryan Fox puts himself in US Masters contention with solid opening round at Augusta National

Kiwi Ryan Fox has put himself in the hunt after his opening round at the US Masters, shooting a three-under-par 69 to sit just four shots off the lead.

In challenging conditions, Fox got off to a flyer and was five under through just eight holes, before two bogeys on the back nine stalled his progress.

Not even in his wildest dreams could he imagine his opening round at Augusta National would start like this.

Ryan Fox in action at the US Masters.
Ryan Fox in action at the US Masters. Photo credit: Getty Images

"To be fair, it's a lot better than any of us thought it was going to be today," said Fox. "It was actually pretty playable early on."

He made the most of it, a fine bunker shot on the third helping him start with three straight birdies.

All of a sudden, Fox found himself in a share of a lead and after an eagle putt on the eighth, he held it alone, much to the delight of the travelling Kiwi fans.

Some of the good work was undone on the back nine, with a visit to Roy's Creek taking him from a potential birdie to bogey, and he dropped a further shot at 16, but as Fox told Sky Sport, he can see the positives. 

"It got so hard to pick the wind out there," he said. "I felt I hit a lot of good shots that didn't quite end up where I thought they were going to be, but if you had given three under at the start of the day, I would have taken it."

Fox is tied for sixth, four shots back from American leader Bryson DeChambeau. Breathing down his neck, one shot back, is Scottie Scheffler, but all eyes were on another man.

Tiger Woods started his 26th Masters appearance in style with a birdie and showed no reason why he can't break the all-time record of 23 consecutive Masters cuts tomorrow. He was one under through 13 holes, before play was stopped for fading light.

Golf fans now hope tomorrow can be a tale of the Tiger and the Fox.