FIELD OF CONTENDERS CROWDED.Byline: DAVE A file sharing program from Thursby Software Systems, Inc., Arlington, TX (www.thursby.com) that allows a Macintosh to share files with a PC. Designed specifically for and needing installation only on the Mac, DAVE works with Microsoft's native SMB/CIFS file sharing protocols and uses SHELBURNE Golf
The most intriguing Masters in years starts Thursday with a field that includes a longtime legend, awesome strength at the top of the world rankings, Ireland's best hope for its first major title in more than a half-century, and a middle-aged Ryder Cup Ryder Cup
Biennial team golf event first held in 1927. It was originally played between teams of golfers from the U.S. and Britain; since 1979 players opposing the U.S. have been chosen from all of Europe. The trophy was donated by the British seed merchant Samuel Ryder. captain who just might play himself onto his own team - if not into a green jacket first.
Jack Nicklaus Noun 1. Jack Nicklaus - United States golfer considered by many to be the greatest golfer of all time (born in 1940)
Jack William Nicklaus, Nicklaus , 65, winner of a record six Masters The Six Masters is the name of the original governing body of the Royal Grammar School Worcester.
The Governing body of Six Worcester Citizens was set up in 1561, the governing of the school previously being in the hands of the Bishop of Worcester and the Trinity Guild. titles, committed Monday to his 45th appearance at Augusta National Golf Club Augusta National Golf Club, located in the American city of Augusta, Georgia, is one of the most famous and exclusive golf clubs in the world. Founded by Bobby Jones on the site of a former tree nursery, the club opened for play in January 1933. . He joins a field that includes five players - World No. 1 Vijay Singh For the politician, see .
Vijay Singh (born 22 February, 1963) is a professional golfer who was number one in the Official World Golf Rankings for 32 weeks in 2004 and 2005. , No. 2 Tiger Woods Editing of this page by unregistered or newly registered users is currently disabled. , No. 3 Ernie Els Theodore Ernest "Ernie" Els (born October 17, 1969) is a South African golfer who has been one of the top professional players in the world since the mid-1990s. A former World No. 1, he is known as "The Big Easy", for his imposing physical stature (he stands 1. , No. 4 Phil Mickelson Philip Alfred Mickelson (born June 16, 1970) (nicknamed "Lefty" for his left-handed swing, even though he is otherwise right-handed), is an American professional golfer. He is one of the leading players of his generation, having won three major championships and a total of 32 and No. 5 Retief Goosen Retief Goosen (born February 3, 1969) is a South African professional golfer who has been in the top ten in the Official World Golf Rankings for several years.
Goosen was born in Pietersburg (now Polokwane), South Africa. - who have won a combined 17 majors. Any of them could finish the year No. 1, as could Dublin native Padraig Harrington, who is pushing hard at No. 6.
Harrington outdueled then-No. 1 Woods to win Woods' offseason Williams World Challenge three years ago at Sherwood Country Club. Last month, the 34-year-old Irishman earned his first PGA Tour The PGA Tour is an organization that operates the USA's main professional golf tours. It is headquartered in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, USA. Its name is officially rendered in all caps as “PGA TOUR". victory at the expense of another top player - shooting a final-round 63 to Singh's 64 at the Honda Classic The Honda Classic is a PGA Tour golf tournament that is played each March in Florida. It was founded in 1972 as the Jackie Gleason's Inverrary Classic. In 1981, American Motors (AMC) backed the tournament. Since 1982, Honda has sponsored it. , then defeating Singh in a playoff.
Harrington is bidding to become Ireland's first major champion since Fred Daly won the British Open in 1947. With 26 worldwide runner-up finishes, he might not be that much of a long shot to push through.
However, former Wood Ranch of Simi Valley teaching pro Tom Lehman could be the best long-shot pick in the field, even at age 46 in an event in which the oldest winner was Nicklaus at 46 in 1986.
If it seems a stretch that Lehman could seriously elevate his playing fortunes so late in his career, consider this:
He nearly has won twice this year, including the toughest event to date on the 2005 tour.
The 2006 U.S. Ryder Cup captain held his own until the final two holes while playing in the same group with Woods, who won the event, for 31 holes on a fog-extended Sunday in the Buick Invitational at Torrey Pines.
Nine days ago, Lehman was the leader in the clubhouse late in the final round of another weather-extended tournament - the Players Championship - before Fred Funk prevailed by a stroke with a sand-save par on his final hole.
Few golfers have gotten as much out of as few career PGA Tour victories as Lehman, whose five wins include the British Open and Tour Championship in 1996, when the longtime minor-league veteran was the PGA Tour Player of the Year.
Beyond that, Lehman nearly won at the Masters in 1994, finishing second, two shots behind winner Jose Maria Olazabal. Lehman also just missed again at the U.S. Open in '96, when he finished a stroke behind winner Steve Jones at Oakland Hills.
Lehman's current surge started late last year, when he had four top-six finishes in his final five events, including a second at the Michelin Championship at Las Vegas. His tie for second at this year's Buick Invitational included a career-low 62 on Torrey Pines North. His closing 68 at the Players was the lowest score anyone posted that day, when winds up to 40 mph at TPC at Sawgrass The TPC at Sawgrass is a well-known golf course in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, and was the inaugural Tournament Players Club. Sawgrass has two courses, the Stadium Course and the Valley Course, and is also home to the PGA Tour's headquarters. contributed to 16 rounds in the 80s and the highest single-round average (76.5) in the 32-year history of an event that has been called the unofficial fifth major.
If Lehman or Harrington or someone else outside golf's world top five doesn't charge hard this week, the 69th Masters could produce a high- profile showdown for the ages.
Woods, Mickelson and Els are multiple winners this year, and Singh easily could be - he won the Sony Open, lost in a playoff at the Honda and shared the Bay Hill lead before his approach shot found water on the final hole.
Goosen has yet to win in 2005, but only Singh was hotter at the finish of the 2004 season, when Goosen won the U.S. Open and Tour Championship during his final five starts.
His efforts were overshadowed by nine-time winner Singh, who had a remarkable six wins and one runner-up finish during an eight-start stretch from August to October en route to ending Woods' five-year reign as tour Player of the Year. But Woods was paying attention to Goosen, whose 2004 stats would have had him challenging for Player of the Year most years.
``You guys always say the 'Big Four,''' Woods playfully chided the media at the Buick Invitational in February. ``What about Goose?''
Woods, who includes three Masters titles among his eight major championships, has won twice this year. One of those came in a memorable Sunday shootout Shootout
Venture capital jargon. Refers to two or more venture capital firms fighting for the startup. with Mickelson at the Ford Championship - a victory that vaulted Woods back briefly to the No. 1 ranking Singh had taken from him in September, and which Singh has subsequently claimed again.
Els, who has two U.S. Opens among his three major titles, has played mostly on the European Tour this year, winning twice.
Mickelson, who won his first major at last year's Masters, enters his first major title defense with a tour-leading three victories, including a playoff win Monday at the BellSouth Classic.
He enters as the hottest player, which could be an advantage. Finishing fastest, in this field, might be an even bigger advantage.
ON THE GREEN
BY DAVE SHELBURNE