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Vijay Singh seeks return to No.1 form

Vijay Singh believes he is capable of repeating his superb form of two years ago when he won nine times on the PGA Tour and briefly dethroned Tiger Woods as world number one.

"I am in line to play as good, or even better, as I did in 2004, winning in excess of $10 million," world number two Singh told reporters on the eve of Thursday's inaugural Abu Dhabi Golf Championship.

"I don't need to raise the level of my game. I just need to be more consistent and start winning again."

The 42-year-old Fijian arrived in Abu Dhabi, the latest stop on the 2006 European Tour, after an exhausting 36-hour trip from Hawaii via San Francisco and London.

"I expect to play well here," said Singh. "I don't know if I am going to do that but I haven't come all the way here to finish second.

"It was a long trip but I am feeling good. I had a good two weeks in Hawaii but felt a little disappointed not to win there."

Singh had closing rounds of 65 and 66 to finish sixth at the Sony Open last Sunday. Seven days earlier, he was runner-up to Australia's Stuart Appleby at the Mercedes Championships.

The tall Fijian appeared unconcerned about reducing Woods's huge lead in the world rankings.

"I am not going to worry about trying to catch Tiger," said Singh. "It will take a lot to catch Tiger now.

"It's a long season, there are a lot of tournaments and you just have to go out there and take care of business the way you know you can.

"No matter what area you are in, you reach the level I did two years ago, that's incredible.

"You are the best player in the world, and the best player in anything is pretty big. I think I am capable of doing that again."

Colin Montgomerie, one of Singh's title rivals this week, says his target this season is to cement his place in the world's top 10.

"It's not a New Year resolution or stuff like that," said the 42-year-old Scotsman. "But if I am in the top 10 by the end of 2006 I will have had a very successful two years, that's the goal."

World number 10 Montgomerie struggled for form two years ago while negotiating a painful and public divorce and slipped to a lowly 80th at the start of 2005.

"Last year I made two realistic goals, one was to get back in the top 25, which I succeeded in doing, and the next was to be among the top 10," added Montgomerie, who won a record eighth European order of merit title in 2005.

January 19, 2006


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