Masters 2021: Justin Rose leads at Augusta National, Rory McIlroy and Dustin Johnson miss cut

By Alex BysouthBBC Sport
Justin Rose
Justin Rose has twice finished runner-up at the Masters
Masters second-round leaderboard
-7 J Rose (Eng); -6 B Harman (US), W Zalatoris (US); -5 J Spieth (US), M Leishman (Aus); -4 J Thomas (US), T Finau (US), B Wiesberger (Ast), SW Kim (Kor), C Champ (US), H Matsuyama (Jpn)
Selected others: -1 B DeChambeau (US); Level R MacIntyre (Sco), S Lowry (Ire), T Fleetwood (Eng), M Fitzpatrick (Eng); +1 T Hatton (Eng); +3 P Casey (Eng), I Poulter (Eng), P Mickelson (US)
Missed cut: +5 D Johnson (US), L Westwood (Eng); +6 R McIlroy (NI)

England's Justin Rose leads the Masters heading into the weekend but saw his first-round advantage cut to one shot at Augusta National on Friday.

Rose led by four strokes at seven under par after the opening round but has players queuing up behind him after carding a level-par 72 on day two.

Americans Will Zalatoris (68) and Brian Harman (69) are at six under par.

Jordan Spieth and Australia's Marc Leishman are another shot back, with 10 players now within three of the lead.

World number one and defending champion Dustin Johnson, who won this major in November with a record score of 20 under par, missed the cut at five over, the same score as England's Lee Westwood, while Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy ended on six over.

Only 12 players shot under par in the opening round but more accessible pin positions and less wind provided better scoring conditions on day two.

Rose recovers to maintain top spot

Two-time runner-up Rose has experience of leading at the Masters but has previously failed to turn those advantages into victories at Augusta National.

This was the fourth time the 40-year-old topped the field heading into day two, a feat matched only by record six-time champion Jack Nicklaus, and he has now led or co-led a round on seven occasions - the most of any player to not win a Green Jacket.

It needed a recovery on the back nine to keep Rose in pole position after four bogeys and a birdie saw his four-stroke lead cut to one by the eighth.

Austria's Bernd Wiesberger, who made six birdies in his opening 10 holes, set the early clubhouse lead at four under par before Leishman went one better with a five-under 67, having started the day at level par.

Rose rekindled some of the form he showed on Thursday by making five successive pars on the back nine and then three birdies in four holes to keep the target at seven under.

"The finger was moving towards the panic button, it was a poor start for sure," he said. "I was really pleased to turn it around and made some great swings around Amen Corner. I got aggressive on the 13th tee and felt that was the turning point.

"Rarely do you put together a great round and back it up with another the following day. My intention was to play free and I did that."

Americans challenging

Will Zalatoris
Will Zalatoris finished tied for sixth at the US Open on his major debut last year

Zalatoris was a late entrant at Augusta after climbing inside the world's top 50 in February, but heads into the third round one stroke off the lead.

The 24-year-old is aiming to become the first debutant to win the Green Jacket since Fuzzy Zoeller in 1979, and finished with three successive birdies for a four-under 68 that will put him in the final group with Rose on Saturday.

"Just being here is pretty cool," said Zalatoris. "Being in the final group on the Saturday at the Masters is a dream come true."

He shares second place with fellow American Harman, who birdied 17 and 18 for a second successive 69.

Spieth, who won the Texas Open last week to end a losing run that stretched back to his win at the 2017 Open Championship, is also in contention at the Georgia venue.

The 2015 Masters champion closed the gap on Rose to two shots with a four-under 68.

The 27-year-old three-time major champion birdied three of his last six holes after dropping his only shot of the day at the par-three 12th.

It is the third time the American has opened with consecutive rounds under par at the tournament, with the previous two resulting in a tie for second in 2014 before he claimed the Green Jacket the following year.

Compatriot Tony Finau eagled the second and also made six birdies, with bogeys at 12 and 18 seeing him sign for a six-under 66. He is at four under, alongside Justin Thomas.

World number two Thomas was also on for a 66 before dropping his first stroke of the day on the final hole, as he failed to convert a par putt from three feet.

US Open champion Bryson DeChambeau found form after struggling on the opening day, posting a five-under 67 that included seven birdies as he moved to one under par for the week.

But four-time major champion Brooks Koepka, who had surgery on his knee last month, missed his first cut at a major since the 2013 Open Championship after finishing at five over par.

Kim damages putter in frustration

Kim Si-woo
Kim Si-woo had to putt with his three wood for the final four holes

South Korea's Kim Si-woo is within touching distance of the lead after a three-under-par 69 moved him to four under on day two.

That is despite the world number 49 damaging his putter in frustration on 15. He went on to make par using his three wood and then used the same club to par the remaining three holes.

Japan's Hideki Matsuyama is also in the group of six players at four under par after a one-under 71 that included an eagle from the fringes of the green at the par-five 13th.

England's Tommy Fleetwood, who carded a two-under 70, and Matthew Fitzpatrick are seven shots back at level par, alongside Scottish debutant Robert MacIntyre, who made five birdies in a 70 of his own on Friday.

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