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Match Play: Tiger headlines staff predictions

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Tiger Woods hasn’t advanced past the second round in three chances since winning the 2008 WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship.

Yet, he still is the oddsmakers’ favorite this week at Dove Mountain in Marana, Ariz.

Woods has teed it up only twice in 2013, missing the cut in the European Tour event at Abu Dhabi and then winning his seventh career title at Torrey Pines with a dominating performance four weeks ago in the Farmers Insurance Open.

Woods will begin his trek toward the championship hardware with a first-round match against Charles Howell III, who is coming off his first missed cut of the season.

Two of our panelists have jumped on the Woods bandwagon, while Charl Schwartzel, Louis Oosthuizen and Luke Donald all register as favorites as well.

As for our panel, there has been a change at the top, with Nick Masuda taking the lead in the clubhouse after surpassing $3 million in earnings behind Schwartzel’s third-place finish last week at the Northern Trust Open. Jeff Rude remains right on his tail, as does Lance Ringler.

Take a look at this week’s picks:

The field according to the Golfweek/Sagarin Rankings

  • 1. Tiger Woods
  • 2. Luke Donald
  • 3. Adam Scott
  • 4. Matt Kuchar
  • 5. Steve Stricker
  • 6. Jason Dufner
  • 7. Lee Westwood
  • 8. Justin Rose
  • 10. Jim Furyk
  • 11. Ian Poulter
  • 12. Bo Van Pelt
  • 13. Rory McIlroy
  • 15. Dustin Johnson
  • 16. Sergio Garcia
  • 17. Louis Oosthuizen
  • 18. Bubba Watson
  • 19. Charl Schwartzel
  • 20. Francesco Molinari
  • 21. Robert Garrigus
  • 22. Ryan Moore
  • 24. Zach Johnson
  • 25. Ernie Els
  • 26. Hunter Mahan
  • 27. Jamie Donaldson
  • 28. Nick Watney
  • 29. Jason Day
  • 31. Webb Simpson
  • 32. Henrik Stenson
  • 34. Rickie Fowler
  • 35. Keegan Bradley
  • 36. John Senden
  • 37. Peter Hanson
  • 38. Matteo Manassero
  • 39. Carl Pettersson
  • 42. Scott Piercy
  • 43. Fredrik Jacobson
  • 45. Nicolas Colsaerts
  • 46. Bill Haas
  • 47. Graeme McDowell
  • 48. Martin Kaymer
  • 50. Thongchai Jaidee
  • 51. Paul Lawrie
  • 55. Padraig Harrington
  • 57. Thorbjorn Olesen
  • 61. Charles Howell III
  • 63. Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano
  • 65. Marcel Siem
  • 67. Rafael Cabrera Bello
  • 69. George Coetzee
  • 70. Branden Grace
  • 71. David Toms
  • 74. Marcus Fraser
  • 76. Hiroyuki Fujita
  • 78. Thomas Bjorn
  • 85. K.J. Choi
  • 90. Alexander Noren
  • 96. Tim Clark
  • 110. Richard Sterne
  • 126. Stephen Gallacher
  • 139. Shane Lowry
  • 141. Russell Henley
  • 144. Chris Wood
  • 154. Richie Ramsay
  • 155. David Lynn

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