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Tiger Beats Crowds to Augusta

Scandal-battered golfer gets in some early practice for the Masters
By Marie Morris,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 4, 2010 4:34 PM CDT
Tiger Beats Crowds to Augusta
Showing that his hand-eye coordination isn't as battered as his reputation, Tiger Woods catches a golf ball on the practice range at Augusta National Golf Club in Augusta, Ga., Sunday, April 4, 2010.   (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

(Newser) – A day before his eagerly awaited press conference, Tiger Woods hit the links at Augusta National this afternoon. Sporting what appear to be the beginnings of a goatee, the scandal-plagued superstar unexpectedly arrived around 1pm and played nine holes with Mark O'Meara. "He's one of the toughest guys mentally I've ever met," said O'Meara, a close friend who won the tournament in 1998. "I think he'll do well this week." Practice rounds for the Masters, which begins Thursday, formally start tomorrow.

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Woods will meet the media en masse for the first time since Thanksgiving tomorrow at 2pm. "In the last 10 or 12 years he has been the most scrutinized player who has ever played the game," O'Meara told the Augusta Chronicle. "With that comes a lot of responsibility and he dropped the ball there, a little bit. But he's trying to make good." Fellow pro Jim Furyk told the AP: "It's nice to have him back and I can't wait until he's out here and I don't have to answer any more questions about him."
(Read more Tiger Woods stories.)

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