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Players mooting change in World Matchplay format

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A radical move is under way to change the format for January's Match Play Championship in Melbourne.

The event, part of the World Golf Championships, presently is scheduled as a 64-man match play tournament, as it has been the past two years it has been held in California.

However, the difficultly in luring the top players all the way to Australia when half of them will be eliminated on the first day, has prompted discussions among the players to change the format.

These discussions have not reached the official level yet, but probably will soon, according to American player John Cook, who as a member of the US PGA Tour's policy board is able to speak both as a player and administrator.

Cook says the problem of half the field being eliminated the first day could be solved by changing the format to 36 holes of stroke play over two days, before switching to match play for the top 16 qualifiers.

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