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Asked if would like to see Player join them for the ceremonial start, Nicklaus said, "That's not my call."
For Nicklaus, a newcomer to this role, it was rare to hit an opening tee shot and then pose for pictures with his rival -- first with Augusta National members, then with wives Kit Palmer and Barbara Nicklaus.
Palmer walked off the tee and immediately slipped into his green jacket -- he and Nicklaus are the only Masters champions who have been invited to join Augusta National.
Nicklaus wasn't sure where his jacket went. Besides, he was on his way out of town to go fishing in the Bahamas.
"I don't think I'll have a television set," Nicklaus said. "I'll be out in the water all day. We have a set on the boat, but whether we'll pick it up at night, watch the replays ... we'll probably do that."
Heath Slocum, Nathan Green and Louis Oosthuizen walked onto the tee for the real start of the Masters. The feature attraction was scheduled much later Thursday, when Tiger Woods will hit his first competitive shot in five months, following revelations of infidelity.
Before leaving Augusta, Nicklaus was asked one last time how he thought Woods would play. Nicklaus held up both hands and said, "I don't know."
"He's a pretty good player," Nicklaus said. "I would think he'll play pretty well."
Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
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