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Golf Today > Tour Schedules > 2006 > PGA Tour > Players Championship > Round 1


Davis Love III again enjoying Sawgrass

Davis Love III again demonstrated his fondness for the TPC at Sawgrass by snatching a share of the lead in the Players Championship first round on Thursday.

The twice former winner fired seven birdies on a damp, overcast day to join playing partner Jim Furyk on seven-under-par 65, two ahead of the chasing pack.

"I feel like I can contend every week but, when you get to a place like here or Hilton Head where you've done well consistently, it gives you a lot of confidence," American Love told reporters.

Champion at Sawgrass in 1992 and 2003, Love triumphed at Hilton head five times between 1987 and 2003.

"This is such a big tournament," said the 41-year-old. "You're pointing towards this one and it's nice to get off to a good start like I did today."

The 1997 U.S. PGA champion raced to the turn in four-under 32, sparkling approach play setting up birdies at the second, sixth, eighth and ninth.

Love then picked up further shots on 11, 12 and 16 to finish level with good friend Furyk in the tournament dubbed the fifth major.

"I got off to a good start, hit the ball real well, made some putts and took advantage of the softer greens," Love said.

"We'll take today over the last two (practice) days, when the wind blew like crazy. It was a little easier to play.

"When you've got a day like today, you have to shoot a good score and not put yourself behind. It's not a good course to catch up on."

Love's rousing start revived memories of his 2003 victory on the Stadium Course when he closed with a superb 64 in wind and rain.

"It was a little easier today," he said. "Not as much wind and the greens obviously not as hard because it's Thursday rather than Sunday.

"But it's not comfortable conditions out there. Into the wind and a little rain makes the holes play a little longer.

"It was difficult but, if you were in the fairway, the course played okay. If you weren't, it played tough."

Although Love has not won on the PGA Tour since the 2003 International, he believes he has a few more titles to come.

"I've made a lot of progress, obviously," he said. "I haven't won (this season) but I still have the same goals, the same excitement.

"I feel like at almost 42, I'm still in the window of opportunity," added Love, who reached the final of last month's Accenture Match Play Championship before losing to Australia's Geoff Ogilvy.

"I want to keep working hard at it."


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