English trio shares Masters lead as Pieters stumbles

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Augusta (United States) (AFP) - England's Justin Rose, Andy Sullivan and Matthew Fitzpatrick grabbed a share of the early first-round lead Thursday at the Masters after Belgium's Thomas Pieters found watery disaster in Amen Corner.

American Kevin Chappell joined the English trio and Masters debutante Pieters on 2-under atop the leaderboard in cool and windy conditions at Augusta National in the year's first major championship.

Pieters made five birdies without a bogey in the first 10 holes to seize a three-shot lead but opened Amen Corner with a bogey at the par-4 11th and then plunked a shot into Rae's Creek on his way to a double bogey at the par-3 12th.

That's the same hole where a double splashdown into Rae's Creek by Jordan Spieth led to his 2016 quadruple bogey disaster that cost him the final round lead.

Seven others were on 1-under, including five-time major champion Phil Mickelson. The 46-year-old American would become the oldest winner in Masters history by capturing his fourth green jacket.

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