WATCH: Nicklaus, Player kick off 83rd Masters

Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player (AP)
Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player (AP)

Cape Town - Golf legends Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player launched the 83rd Masters on Thursday with ceremonial first tee shots before a cheering crowd at Augusta National Golf Club.

LIVE: 83rd Masters - Round 1

The legends were shortly followed by American Andrew Landry hitting the first competitive drive from the field of 87 in the year's first major championship under the towering Georgia pines.

Oddsmakers darling Rory McIlroy, seeking a green jacket to complete a career Grand slam, and Tiger Woods, a 14-time major champion seeking his first major title since 2008 and his fifth Masters crown, were set for late-morning starts at Augusta National.

Teeing off in the final two groups of the afternoon will be world number one Justin Rose of England, twice a Masters runner-up and seeking to become only the fourth player to win the Masters while atop the rankings, and Phil Mickelson, trying to become the oldest major champion at age 48.

None of the world's current top 10 players, including three-time major champion Brooks Koepka, has won the green jacket, a Masters first.

Round 1 tee times for the SIX South Africans:

All SA times

15:03 - Angel Cabrera (ARG), Aaron Wise, Justin Harding (RSA)

15:36 - Branden Grace (RSA), Emiliano Grillo (ARG), Lucas Bjerregaard (DEN)

15:47 - Charl Schwartzel (RSA), Charles Howell, Eddie Pepperell (ENG)

16:42 - Charley Hoffman, Louis Oosthuizen (RSA), Marc Leishman (AUS)

17:37 - Trevor Immelman (RSA), Martin Kaymer (GER), a-Devon Bling

18:43 - Vijay Singh (FIJ), Billy Horschel, a-Jovan Rebula (RSA)

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