World's best on tap for Tiger's return

Updated: 21 February 2009 18:05 IST

From Tiger Woods on down, the top 64 players in the world have committed to play in next week's World Golf Championships Accenture Match Play.

World's best on tap for Tiger's return

Tucson:

From Tiger Woods on down, the top 64 players in the world have committed to play in next week's World Golf Championships Accenture Match Play, organizers said on Friday.

Woods electrified the golf world when he announced on Thursday that he would make his return from an eight-month injury layoff at the event, in which he is the defending champion.

Last year, Woods dominated the 36-hole final, routing Stewart Cink 8 and 7.

The top 64 from the world rankings qualify for the tournament, and had until Friday to commit to playing. The official draw will be released on Sunday.

The top seeds in each of the four brackets are the top four-ranked players in the world - Woods, Spain's Sergio Garcia, Ireland's Padraig Harrington and Fiji's Vijay Singh.

Play begins on Wednesday at a new venue, the Ritz-Carlton Golf Club, Dove Mountain.

Woods is the number one seed for the Accenture Match Play Championship for the seventh time in his career. He won the event in 2003, 2004 and 2008 and has twice finished tied for ninth.

Garcia's best finish is a tie for ninth - in 2000, 2002 and 2005.

Like Woods, Harrington is making his 10th start at the event, where he has tied for fifth twice.

Singh, winner of the WGC 2008 Bridgestone Invitational, tied for fifth last year.

A total of 47 players, almost three-quarters of the field, are from outside the United States. The 19 countries represented ties the record for the tournament.

Australia and South Africa lead the way with eight players each, followed by England, with seven.

If a player withdraws before the brackets are released on Sunday, the next player in the world rankings gains entry and the brackets are redrawn.

If a player withdraws after the draw is official, the next player on the alternate list takes his place.

Barring a withdrawal, Woods will face Australian Brendan Jones in the first round.

Topics : Golf
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