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May 9, 2014

Kaymer increases Players Championship lead

PONTE VEDRA BEACH Florida (Reuters) – Martin Kaymer stretched his lead to a commanding five shots early in the Players Championship second round on Friday, despite having to contend with trickier conditions at the TPC Sawgrass.

The German, who tied the course record with a sizzling nine-under-par 63 on Thursday, followed up with a 69 to post a 12-under total of 132 in the PGA Tour’s flagship event widely regarded as the unofficial fifth major.

May 9, 2014

Kaymer sets Players pace with record equaling 63

PONTE VEDRA BEACH Florida (Reuters) – Martin Kaymer birdied his last four holes to equal the tournament record and seize a two-shot lead in Thursday’s opening round of the Players Championship as several other big names lined up in pursuit.

On an ideal day for low scoring at the TPC Sawgrass where the par-72 Stadium Course has been softened by recent rain, Germany’s Kaymer raced home in a sizzling seven-under-par 29 to complete a nine-under 63.

May 9, 2014

Scott’s No. 1 hopes sink at Players

PONTE VEDRA BEACH Florida (Reuters) – Adam Scott’s hopes of becoming world number one for the first time after this week’s Players Championship sunk on Thursday when he ended up in water on the last two holes of his opening round.

The second-ranked Australian, one of four players competing at the TPC Sawgrass who could dislodge Tiger Woods from the top spot after Sunday’s final round, struggled to a five-over-par 77 to end the day in a tie for 133rd.

May 9, 2014

Golf – Kaymer sets Players pace with record equalling 63

PONTE VEDRA BEACH Florida (Reuters) – Martin Kaymer birdied his last four holes to equal the tournament record and seize a two-shot lead in Thursday’s opening round of the Players Championship as several other big names lined up in pursuit.

On an ideal day for low scoring at the TPC Sawgrass where the par-72 Stadium Course has been softened by recent rain, Germany’s Kaymer raced home in a sizzling seven-under-par 29 to complete a nine-under 63.

May 8, 2014

Rose close to full bloom after injury-hit season

PONTE VEDRA BEACH Florida (Reuters) – Justin Rose shrugged off a “pretty awful” warm-up session to charge into early contention for the Players Championship on Thursday, a timely boost for his U.S. Open title defense next month.

The world number 10 said he was almost back to full health after being hampered by a shoulder injury that sidelined him for the first six weeks this year, unexpected time off he hopes will benefit him as the season unfolds.

May 8, 2014

Henley sets early Players pace with a sizzling 65

PONTE VEDRA BEACH Florida (Reuters) – Russell Henley scorched the back nine with a sizzling birdie blitz to seize an early two-shot lead in Thursday’s opening round of the Players Championship as several big names lined up in hot pursuit.

On an ideal day for low scoring at the TPC Sawgrass where the par-72 Stadium Course has been softened by recent rain, American Henley raced home in six-under-par 30 to complete a seven-under-par 65.

May 8, 2014

Early tee time helps Westwood regain form

PONTE VEDRA BEACH Florida (Reuters) – A tour professional for two decades, Lee Westwood knows all about the vagaries of golf and he rebounded from a missed cut last week in impressive style at the Players Championship on Thursday.

The former world number one took advantage of an unexpectedly early tee time and ideal morning conditions at the TPC Sawgrass to fire a five-under-par 67 in the opening round.

May 7, 2014

Heightened expectation at Tiger-less Players

PONTE VEDRA BEACH Florida (Reuters) – With reigning champion Tiger Woods skipping this week’s Players Championship where any of four golfers could replace him as world number one, there is a palpable sense of expectation at the TPC Sawgrass.

Top-ranked Woods has been sidelined since having surgery for a pinched nerve in his back at the end of March and, in his absence, Adam Scott, Henrik Stenson, Masters champion Bubba Watson and Matt Kuchar all have a chance to dethrone him.

May 7, 2014

Golf – ‘Mr. Consistency’ Kuchar back at a ‘special’ venue

PONTE VEDRA BEACH Florida (Reuters) – Matt Kuchar has been golf’s ‘Mr. Consistency’ for the past two years and he returns to the PGA Tour for this week’s Players Championship after a welcome break following a victory in his last start.

The slender American ended a frustrating run of close calls in spectacular style when he holed a bunker shot on his final hole to win last month’s RBC Heritage in South Carolina, his seventh career win on the U.S. circuit.

May 7, 2014

‘Mr. Consistency’ Kuchar back at a ‘special’ venue

PONTE VEDRA BEACH Florida (Reuters) – Matt Kuchar has been golf’s ‘Mr. Consistency’ for the past two years and he returns to the PGA Tour for this week’s Players Championship after a welcome break following a victory in his last start.

The slender American ended a frustrating run of close calls in spectacular style when he holed a bunker shot on his final hole to win last month’s RBC Heritage in South Carolina, his seventh career win on the U.S. circuit.