Jovial Nicklaus and Player get Masters under way

Jack Nicklaus shouted "get out there a long way" to his ball before striking his tee shot to get the Masters started.

Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player were given a rousing ovation when they got the 82nd edition of the Masters under way at Augusta on Thursday.

The two golfing greats were in high spirits when they hit the honorary tee shots under blue skies in Georgia.

Player was up first before Nicklaus quipped "that hurts" after limbering up with a couple of practice shots and instructed his ball to "get out there a long way" prior to stepping up to for his tee shot.

Nicklaus, whose grandson Gary made a hole-in-one in Wednesday's par-three contest, and Player shared a joke or two and lapped up a great reception as they performed the tradition to start the first major of the year.

Austin Cook, Ted Potter Jr. and Wesley Bryan were the first group to go off at 8:30am local time, with Tiger Woods due to start his round at 10:42am.