Tiger to play in Memorial; Guan, too

Tiger Woods will defend his title at the Memorial Tournament starting May 30.

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Tiger Woods announced Tuesday that he will play in the Memorial Tournament May 30-June 2 at Muirfield Village Golf Club in Dublin, Ohio. Amateur Tianlang Guan, 14, will join him after receiving a sponsor exemption.

Woods is the defending champion of the event. He won by two shots in 2012 to capture PGA Tour win No. 73, tying Jack Nicklaus, the event’s host. Woods has won the tournament four other times (1999, ’00, ’01 and ’09).

“I always look forward to playing in Jack's tournament,” Woods said on his website. “It's a wonderful course, and we are always treated well. We, as players, are very appreciative of what he has meant to the game.”

Woods is coming off a victory at the Players Championship, his fourth PGA Tour victory of the seasons in just seven starts. He’s won five times since his victory at last year’s Memorial and has since reclaimed the World No. 1 ranking, too.

His Memorial start will be Woods’ final tournament before the U.S. Open, which will take place June 13-16 at Merion Golf Club in Ardmore, Pa.

Guan, who became the youngest player to make the cut in a major championship last month at the Masters, will be making his third PGA Tour start. He also played in the Zurich Classic of New Orleans and last week’s Byron Nelson Championship.

“I am very excited to accept the invitation to play at the Memorial Tournament," Guan said. "It is Jack Nicklaus' event, and the same as all the golf fans out there I have very high respect to Mr. Nicklaus, not just as a golf legend, but also as a great person.”

Guan and his parents met with Nicklaus during the Masters. Now, after Guan’s sponsor exemption, it’s obvious Nicklaus was impressed by the 14-year-old from China.

"For his country, he's going to be the poster boy of being able to say, 'Look, I can do this. You all go do it, too,' " Nicklaus said.

– The Associated Press contributed to this report

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