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Big Three start the 2014 Masters

It is one of the grandest traditions at the Masters -- the honorary starters hitting ceremonial drives off the first tee.

Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer and Gary Player did the honors to begin the first round at Augusta National Golf Club on Thursday morning. And they had at least one noteworthy fan watching on television.

"It never gets old watching the honorary starters tee off," Tiger Woods tweeted. "One of the oldest and best traditions in the game."

Recovering from recent back surgery, Woods is skipping the Masters for the first time since he made his amateur debut in 1995.

For the record, Palmer hit a slight draw down the middle of the No. 1 fairway. Player drove 40 yards longer and Nicklaus, going last, bounced his shot a little farther.

“Jack outdrove me by a yard or two today," Player said of the six-time winner. "But that’s not bad considering that he used to outdrive me by 50."

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