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Tiger Woods warms up at Bethpage Black

Tiger Woods played a practice round at Bethpage Black here on Monday, taking a preview peek at the golf course where he will try to defend his US Open title and win his 15th major next week.

One day after capturing his fourth title at the Memorial for his 67th career PGA triumph, Woods played the state park layout that has been lengthened to 7,426 yards since his 2002 US Open victory there.

Woods made an 18-hole tour of the famed public course with Hank Haney, his swing coach, during a stopover on his way home to Florida, where he will train for the upcoming week before returning next Monday for the tournament.

The victory at Memorial, hosted by Jack Nicklaus, was the second for Woods since his return in February following left knee surgery. The world number one also won at the Arnold Palmer Invitational in March, his last Masters tuneup.

Woods limped to a playoff victory over Rocco Mediate in 19 holes to win last year's US Open at Torrey Pines and capture his 14th career major title, then underwent surgery to repair his knee that sidelined him for eight months.

Woods is four major titles shy of matching Nicklaus' all-time record of 18 majors. In total triumphs, Woods ranks third in PGA history behind Sam Snead's record 82 and Nicklaus with 73.

Since winning the Palmer event at Bay Hill, Woods has also shared sixth at the Masters and fourth at Charlotte, placed eighth at the Players Championship and won the Memorial.


June 9, 2009

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