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Tony Finau in the Masters leaderboard despite dislocating his ankle in the Par 3 Competition

AUGUSTA, Ga. – The last 24 hours of Tony Finau included a bit of everything: Pain. Shame. Concern. Relief. Determination. Emotion.

The 28-year-old American, with roots from Samoa, fought a severe ankle sprain and fired a 4 under 68 in the first round at the Masters. How he got hurt was funny, but painful to watch. How he got over it was frankly extraordinary.

"It can not be recovered," he said.

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It was one of the best arguments of the first day of the tournament, certainly more unpredictable.

Finau dislocated his left ankle by holding a hole-in-one during the Par-3 Contest on Wednesday and then returned it to place. The X-rays were negative. Finau had an MRI on Thursday to determine if he could make his Masters debut.

The doctors authorized him to play, and his ankle was firmly attached as he walked to the driving range. There are no pills or injections to numb the pain. Only pure sand.

"I was extremely happy that nothing was very wrong with my foot," he said. "Honestly, it was a very good time, probably followed by one of my most embarrassing moments and a scary moment at the same time, it was pretty crazy, all the emotions that I had to deal with during the night, but I was more than ecstatic just to be walking towards the first shirt and play in my first Masters. "

His swollen ankle did not feel quite right, and he found himself compensating for certain shots. In short, he could not put all his weight on that foot, a big concern for a guy known as one of the longest hitters on the PGA Tour.

Tony Finau opened with a 68 despite dislocating his left ankle while celebrating a hole-in-one in the Par-3 Contest on Wednesday: "Nothing less than a miracle if you ask me". David Cannon / Getty Images

"The only thing we can not do is damage him more," he said. "So the most important thing for me was my health and trying to take care of the next few days and not just worry about the moment, it definitely hurts at different times of the round."

He felt much better when he birdied five of 12 holes to get to 4 under. He missed a short pair putt in par 4 No. 14 or his round could have been even better. Still, he recovered with a birdie on par 5 of 15.

He finished tied for second with Matt Kuchar, two strokes behind leader Jordan Spieth.

No one could have waited after seeing Finau cautiously climbed a golf cart after its display ended early the previous day.

The ordeal began when Finau flew the back of the seventh green on the par-3 field of Augusta National and spun it on the hole to get an ace. He began to run, a forbidden act in these sacred grounds, towards the hole to celebrate. His problem came when he turned and stepped back. He landed awkwardly on his left ankle, which moved grotesquely. He dropped to one knee and ended up pushing the joint into place.

"I saw where I was and I knew where I had to be," he said. "Instinctively, I tried, if it did not work, I would have slept there and I would have been even more embarrassed to have been taken on a stretcher to celebrate a hole in one."

It was the 12th of his life, but the first one in front of his wife and children, and he arrived in his first Par-3 contest.

"It's just a stimulus thing of the moment," he said. "I have no idea why I started running, I saw (the ball) disappear, it was my first Par-3 contest, my first Masters, I made a hole in one, so there were a lot of things that went into that.

"I'm probably not good (defensive), I'm backing down, so I will not do it the rest of my career."

Finau credited the knife's fire as one of the reasons he was able to Handling pain, restless night and uncertainty Popular in the Polynesian culture, dancing with knives of fire is exactly what it seems There are knives attached to the ends of the sticks, covered with burning material, and furiously turned by a Finau perfected the craft, even dealing with some cuts and burns on the road, long before his golf game took off.

"I see myself as a very hard mentally person, and I think I proved it today. in my round, "he said." I could only lower my head and play "

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