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Fred Couples & Greg Norman to return as Presidents Cup captains
March 31, 2010

Fred Couples, one of golf’s most experienced campaigners and the U.S. Presidents Cup captain, will play a U.S. Masters practice round with Tiger Woods at Augusta National on Monday.

Couples said he was not sure what time he and Woods would play on Monday, speculating that it might not be until after the disgraced world number one’s 2pm (1900 BST) press conference.

“I’ve played with him six or eight times the last 10 years in a practice round there, so it’s not like I’m trying to get around him,” said the 1992 Masters champion.

“He’s the best player in the world, he’s won it a bunch of times, he knows how to play the course, and even at my age I still learn some of the nuances about Augusta, and that’s why I’m playing with him.”

Couples said he expects four-time winner Woods to come out with all guns blazing at the Masters, which will be the world No. 1’s first tournament in nearly five months, since reports of marital infidelity first surfaced.

“We all know he made a mistake and we’ll see how he overcomes it. I’m a friend of his, not his counsellor but I know at Augusta he’ll be ready to go.”

Couples also has no doubt Woods will be part of the American team at next year’s Presidents Cup against a World team, but is not quite so sure Woods will be on board for this year’s Ryder Cup in Wales.

“I believe he’s ready to start playing and I know all the team mates will want him on there but I don’t know.”

Couples, 50, was speaking ahead of the Houston Open that starts on Thursday.

He arrived here on a hot streak after winning the past three tournaments on the Champions Tour for seniors aged 50 or over.

Couples attended a press conference with PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem, who announced that Couples and Greg Norman would return as respective captains for the Presidents Cup at Royal Melbourne in Australia next November.

Couples guided the Americans to victory against the Norman-led International team at last year’s event in San Francisco.

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