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PGA Tour Florida swing starts at Doral

Ty Tryon is sometimes mentioned as the next Tiger Woods. This week golf's future and present will share the same course for the first time as the PGA Tour shifts to Florida.

Tryon, the heralded 17-year-old who struggled in his season debut last month, joins Woods are part of a quality field for the $4.7 million Genuity Championship, which begins Thursday at the Doral Resort and Spa.

The youngest player ever to earn a PGA Tour card at 17 years, six months and one day, Tryon was the center of attention at the Phoenix Open last month, but failed to make the cut.

"I feel a lot better than I did at Phoenix. I was a little tense out there, let everything get to my head a bit," Tryon siad. "I feel really positive this week. I am just going to have a good time and try to compete."

Still a student at Dr. Phillips High School in Orlando, Tryon turned some heads last season when he was the co-leader after the first round of the BC Open.

Woods knows all about being in the media spotlight, and his relatively slow start has the world's best golfer defending his play. His best finish of the season is a tie for fifth at the Buick Invitational and he is coming off a first-round loss to Australia's Peter O'Malley in the Match Play Championship.

But with the defense of the Masters a little more than a month away, Woods is not concerned.

"I am working on it. I don't know how far I am away," Woods said. "I know that the pieces are starting to come together. It is pretty neat to see the progress being made."

Woods finished tied for ninth in his only appearance at this tournament in 1998.

The field includes Spain's Sergio Garcia, who captured the Mercedes Open in early January for his third career PGA title. He lost in the third round of the Match Play Championship last week.

"The last couple of weeks, (my play) has not been as good as it was," Garcia admits. "I am working on it and working pretty hard at it. I am starting to get my feel back."

The field includes Australia's Greg Norman, a three-time winner of this event who is making his first start of the year.

Among those trying to bring their success across the country is Chris DiMarco, who earned the most cumulative points in the nine events that make up the West Coast swing, and Ian Leggatt, a Canadian who took advantage of a depleted field to win last week's Tucson Open.

David Duval, Davis Love III and Vijay Singh of Fiji also are entered.

The defending champion is Joe Durant, who became the first multiple winner of 2001 with his victory here.


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