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Singh Wins, Won’t Play the Colonial

From Associated Press

Vijay Singh made birdies on the 15th and 16th holes Sunday to win the Byron Nelson Championship at Irving, Texas, ending a week that began with criticism over his comments about Annika Sorenstam.

Singh then said he would not play at the Colonial in Texas this week, when Sorenstam will become the first woman to play on the men’s tour since Babe Zaharias, who qualified for the 1945 Los Angeles Open.

Singh said his decision to withdraw had nothing to do with Sorenstam. He said he promised his wife he would take the week off if he won the Byron Nelson.

“It has nothing to do with the controversy,” Singh said. “I’ve played in four straight tournaments, and I need a break.”

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After his runner-up finish last week in North Carolina, Singh said Sorenstam had no business playing in the Colonial, and that he hoped she missed the cut.

Before the Nelson, Singh said he was sorry if his comments came across as a personal attack.

Singh rallied on the back nine Sunday after losing his lead to a surging Nick Price. Singh shot a four-under-par 66 and finished at 15-under 265, two strokes ahead of Price. Robert Allenby, playing for the first time since the Masters, finished at 268 after a 65.

Singh had a 28-foot birdie putt on the 475-yard 15th hole, getting back to 14 under on the same hole that Price had just three-putted for a bogey that left him at 13 under.

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After his second shot on the 554-yard 16th found the greenside bunker, Singh blasted the shot within six feet and made the birdie to cushion his lead.

It was the 13th career victory and second of the season for Singh, who won $1 million to push his season earnings to $2.9 million, fourth on the money list. He’s the fifth multiple winner this season on the PGA Tour.

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Tiger Woods failed to mount a final-round comeback at the Deutsche Bank-SAP Open at Alveslohe, Germany, as Padraig Harrington beat Thomas Bjorn on the first hole of a playoff for his seventh career title.

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Woods, trying to win the event for the third consecutive year, was never in contention. He was nine strokes back after a four-under 68 in the final round and finished tied for 29th at 10-under 278, his worst finish in a stroke-play event since placing 29th at the 2001 PGA Championship.

Harrington made a five-foot par putt on the first playoff hole to beat Bjorn. Harrington rolled in a 12-foot par putt on the final hole of regulation to force the playoff.

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Jay Sigel sank a nine-foot birdie putt on the final hole for a one-stroke victory over a surging Mike McCullough in the Bayer Advantage Celebrity Pro-Am at Parkville, Mo.

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Sigel, 59, shot a seven-under 65 in the final round to become the oldest player to win on the Champions Tour this year.

He finished with an 11-under 205 to hold off the 58-year-old McCullough, who had pulled into a tie with three consecutive birdies on the final nine holes.


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