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Sergio Garcia
Sergio Garcia

After a moment of silence at Gary Player Country Club in Sun City honored former South African president Nelson Mandela, who died Thursday, Sergio Garcia wrapped up the first round of the Nedbank Golf Challenge by taking the lead.

In the second round, however, Jamie Donaldson surpassed Garcia to take a three-shot lead into the weekend.

"I've played very nicely for the first two rounds and hit a lot of good shots so I am happy with the way I am playing. We had to play six holes of the first round and then back out after a 45-minute ...

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Categories: Pro, Other Tours, Top Stories
Jim McCabe
Zach Johnson, right, alongside Jason Day during the first round of the 2013 Northwestern Mutual World Challenge.
Zach Johnson, right, alongside Jason Day during the first round of the 2013 Northwestern Mutual World Challenge.

THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. – So after a back-nine jaunt that featured more hills than a Rocky Mountain ski resort, what awaited the boys upon their arrival at Sherwood Country Club’s 18th hole Thursday was another uphill climb.

Fortunately, what rested atop that final walk was a putting green and oh, how that proved to be a sanctuary for wounded and battered spirits. This Northwestern Mutual World Challenge a hit ’n giggle affair? Well, if it is, then consider Round 1 to have been filled with many hits (the field average for the 18 in attendance was 72.78 and there ...

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Golfweek Staff
Tiger Woods during the first round of the Northwestern Mutual World Challenge.
Tiger Woods during the first round of the Northwestern Mutual World Challenge.

Tiger Woods returned to action for the first time in nearly a month Thursday at the Northwestern Mutual World Challenge at Sherwood Country Club in Thousand Oaks, Calif.

And while it wasn't the sharpest round for the tournament host, Woods sits in solo fifth after an opening-round 1-under 71. He is four shots back of leader Zach Johnson, who is 5 under, a shot clear of second-place Matt Kuchar.

Woods told the Golf Channel after his round that the toughest part about coming back after the layoff was getting his feel back. He made just two birdies and missed ...

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Brentley Romine
Nelson Mandela died on Thursday, Dec. 5, 2013. He was 95.
Nelson Mandela died on Thursday, Dec. 5, 2013. He was 95.

The death of Nelson Mandela on Thursday was felt worldwide, including in the golf world.

Mandela, the former South African president, Nobel Prize winner and human-rights hero, who was 95, has a European Tour event named after him. That tournament, the Nelson Mandela Championship, is co-sponsored by the Sunshine Tour and set for next week in South Africa – and its schedule has been adjusted.

To honor a national day of mourning and the state funeral for Mandela on Sunday, Dec. 15, the Mandela Championship will be played Wednesday through Saturday in Durban, the tours announced. The tournament benefits the Nelson ...

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Categories: Pro, Other Tours, Top Stories
Luke Donald during the first day of play at the Nedbank Golf Challenge in Sun City, South Africa.
Luke Donald during the first day of play at the Nedbank Golf Challenge in Sun City, South Africa.

SUN CITY, South Africa – Luke Donald's rapid start at the Nedbank Golf Challenge was halted by lightning Thursday, leaving the former World No. 1 leading by two shots at 5 under through 11 holes.

No one was able to play more than 12 holes on the first day at Sun City because of the thunderstorm.

Donald began the 30-man invitational with a birdie and an eagle and was 5 under when the day's second interruption for lightning forced players off for good. He was two ahead of Jamie Donaldson and Thomas Bjorn.

"I feel good over the ball ...

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Categories: Pro, Other Tours, Top Stories
Jim McCabe
Tiger Woods during the pro-am of the 2013 Northwestern Mutual World Challenge in Thousand Oaks, Calif.
Tiger Woods during the pro-am of the 2013 Northwestern Mutual World Challenge in Thousand Oaks, Calif.

THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. – He was effusive in his praise, calling it an “amazing 15 years” and suggesting that “if we didn’t have this event, we wouldn’t have a learning center in Orange County (California).”

But at the same time, Tiger Woods conceded that moving his end-of-year tournament from West Coast to East Coast made sense, albeit begrudgingly.

“It’s not an easy decision (and come Sunday) it's going to be emotional, no doubt about it,” said Woods.

When the World Challenge debuted, it arrived on Woods’ 24th birthday – a cold and miserable day at Grayhawk GC in ...

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Jim McCabe
Angel Cabrera during the 2013 Presidents Cup.
Angel Cabrera during the 2013 Presidents Cup.

As title defenses go, little spotlight will be provided Angel Cabrera, but trying to win a second straight Argentina Open takes on personal meaning for the proud Argentine.

The tournament tees off Thursday and is the 14th and final tournament of this year’s LatinoAmerica Series. Mexico’s Jose De Jesus Rodriguez has a slight lead over American Ryan Blaum in the battle to be leading money winner. This week's field will include a couple of PGA Tour veterans who are used to making these trips to South America this time of year, Jeff Gove and Scott Dunlap.

• • •

Q-SCHOOL ...

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Jim McCabe
Tiger Woods during the Northwestern Mutual World Challenge in 2012.
Tiger Woods during the Northwestern Mutual World Challenge in 2012.

Feel free to chuckle the next time you hear world-class players talk of their need for an offseason.

This weekend would certainly fall into that time of year considered to be “an offseason,” yet what are 39 of the world’s top 50 players doing? They’re playing golf.

All 18 players in “Tiger’s Tournament,” officially called the Northwestern Mutual World Challenge at Sherwood CC in Thousand Oaks, Calif., are ranked within the top 30, including five of the top 10:

  • 1. Tiger Woods;
  • 6. Rory McIlroy;
  • 7. Matt Kuchar;
  • 8. Steve Stricker;
  • 10. Jason Day.

Not to be ...

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Jim McCabe
Tiger Woods during the Northwestern Mutual World Challenge in 2012.
Tiger Woods during the Northwestern Mutual World Challenge in 2012.

Feel free to chuckle the next time you hear world-class players talk of their need for an offseason.

This weekend would certainly fall into that time of year considered to be “an offseason,” yet what are 39 of the world’s top 50 players doing? They’re playing golf.

All 18 players in “Tiger’s Tournament,” officially called the Northwestern Mutual World Challenge at Sherwood CC in Thousand Oaks, Calif., are ranked within the top 30, including five of the top 10:

  • 1. Tiger Woods;
  • 6. Rory McIlroy;
  • 7. Matt Kuchar;
  • 8. Steve Stricker;
  • 10. Jason Day.

Not to be ...

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Categories: Other Tours
Bill Zimmerman
Jack Nicklaus during the 2013 Memorial Tournament.
Jack Nicklaus during the 2013 Memorial Tournament.

The Golden Bear has gone garnet and gold. Well, at least in one aspect.

Jack Nicklaus said he would have to root for grandson Nick O'Leary, a tight end for Florida State, if he lines up against Nicklaus' alma mater Ohio State with college football's BCS national championship on the line, according to a Palm Beach Post report.

“I’m an Ohio State guy, but blood is thicker than anything else,” Nicklaus said while at a function in Jupiter, Fla., for the Celebrities Fore Kids Golf Classic. O'Leary is the son of Nicklaus' daughter Nan.

The starting ...

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Brentley Romine
Hideki Matsuyama
Hideki Matsuyama

Hideki Matsuyama keeps making history.

The 21-year-old became the first rookie to capture the Japan Tour's money title following his victory at the Casio World Open on Sunday at Kochi Country Club in Kochi, Japan. The win was his fifth on the Japan Tour this season.

Matsuyama, who turned pro in April, also posted six top-25 finishes in seven PGA Tour starts in 2013.

Brentley Romine
Rory McIlroy birdied the 18th hole to beat Adam Scott at the Australian Open on Sunday, winning for the first time in 2013 and denying Scott the rare Australian triple crown.
Rory McIlroy birdied the 18th hole to beat Adam Scott at the Australian Open on Sunday, winning for the first time in 2013 and denying Scott the rare Australian triple crown.

Rory McIlroy's first victory of 2013 came in dramatic fashion, as McIlroy drained a birdie putt on the final hole at Royal Sydney Golf Club to win the Australian Open by one shot over Adam Scott.

"I wanted to get a win and finally I've been able to get one," McIlroy said. "But more satisfying than that is being able to take one of the best players in the world down the stretch and come out on top."

Here are 5 Thing you need to know from Sunday in Sydney:

• • •

1. WHAT A FINISH: McIlroy trailed Scott by ...

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Bill Zimmerman
Adam Scott celebrates a birdie at the 18th as Rory McIlroy looks on before making par to end the third round of the 2013 Australian Open.
Adam Scott celebrates a birdie at the 18th as Rory McIlroy looks on before making par to end the third round of the 2013 Australian Open.

Continuing his march toward a Down Under triple crown after winning the Australian Masters and PGA Championship, Adam Scott moved into a four-shot lead during Saturday's third round.

Having followed a blistering first-round 62 with a 70, Scott bounced back with a 68 at Royal Sydney to move to 16 under – four shots ahead of Rory McIlroy, who hasn't won this year. Scott said he might need to find top form again in order to win.

“Four shots is a slightly better buffer. It doesn't mean that it can't disappear quickly but it means they've ...

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Brentley Romine
PGA Tour golfer Kevin Streelman during the 2013 World Cup at Royal Melbourne in Australia.
PGA Tour golfer Kevin Streelman during the 2013 World Cup at Royal Melbourne in Australia.

Kevin Streelman was forced to withdraw from the Australian Open Friday with an eye injury.

Streelman was taken to St. Vincent's Hospital in Sydney where he was diagnosed with a scratch on the top of the cornea in his left eye.

"I woke up this morning and something wasn't right in my eye," Streelman told the AFP. "The doctor advised me it was pretty badly infected and while I've been trying using eye drops I just started getting dizzy so I just couldn't go on."

Streelman, one of the few Americans competing this week at a ...

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Brentley Romine
Rory McIIroy laughs as he waits to play his shot off the first tee during Round 2 of the Australian Open.
Rory McIIroy laughs as he waits to play his shot off the first tee during Round 2 of the Australian Open.

Rory McIlroy made nine birdies en route to a second-round 7-under 65 on Friday at the Emirates Australian Open.

McIlroy is now 10 under overall, two shots back of leader Adam Scott, who fired a second-round 70.

"I feel like I'm playing well," McIlroy said. "I'm hitting the ball well off the tee and giving myself plenty of chances. It was good to see a few more putts go in today.

“As I've said for the last few weeks, the game is feeling much better and I'm much more comfortable with it.”

A day after firing ...

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