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Tiger Woods & Michael Jordan to tee up at Wachovia Championship

Tiger Woods and basketball great Michael Jordan will play together for the first time in official competition in the build-up to this week's Wachovia Championship, organizers said on Monday.

World number one Woods and fellow American Jordan, good friends for several years, have been paired in the same threesome for Wednesday's pro-am at Quail Hollow Club.

"We are pleased to have this opportunity to enhance the patrons' experience on Wednesday," tournament director Kim Hougham said in a statement.

"These two gentlemen are two of the most well-known athletes in the world and to have them both here for one day playing in the same group is a special treat."

Dan Fleishman, director of sponsorships and alliances for Wachovia, added: "Michael and Tiger are good friends and have played a lot of personal golf together. We are grateful they agreed to compete in the pro-am together this year."

Jordan has made a habit of watching Woods compete in golf's biggest events, such as the four majors and the biennial Ryder Cup team competition.

He has also acted as a mentor to Woods since the golfer turned professional in late 1996, advising him on how to handle all the pressures of being a high-profile celebrity.

Woods, out of PGA Tour action since tying for second at the Masters three weeks ago, heads a strong field at Quail Hollow that includes 28 players in the world's top 30.

The only absentees are Britain's Paul Casey (the world number 13), playing in this week's Italian Open, and 2003 champion David Toms (19), who withdrew from the tournament without citing a reason.

Second-ranked American Jim Furyk defends the title he won in a playoff with South African Trevor Immelman at Quail Hollow last year.

Also competing this week is world number seven Vijay Singh, the 2005 winner, who has triumphed twice on the 2007 PGA Tour.

The Wachovia Championship starts on Thursday.


May 1, 2007

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