to meet Thai Aphibarnrat in Match Play first round
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[February 17, 2014]
(Reuters) — Swedish world number
three Henrik Stenson was drawn on Sunday to play Thailand's Kiradech
Aphibarnrat in the first round of next week's WGC-Accenture Match Play
Championship at Dove Mountain in Marana, Arizona.
Stenson, who won the elite World Golf Championships (WGC) title
in 2007, has been installed as the top seed in the absence of world
number one Tiger Woods and Masters champion Adam Scott of Australia.
Three-times Match Play winner Woods, second-ranked Scott and
American world number four Phil Mickelson have all opted not to play
in the first of the year's four WGC events.
U.S. Open champion Justin Rose of England, the world number five,
will take on American Scott Piercy in the opening round at Dove
Mountain and sixth-ranked American Zach Johnson comes up against
South African Richard Sterne.
Former world number one Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland, who is now
ranked seventh, faces American Boo Weekley while defending champion
Matt Kuchar of the U.S. will launch his campaign against Austrian
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Kuchar won last year's title with a 2&1 victory over fellow American
Hunter Mahan in a wind-buffeted final.
With Woods, Scott and Mickelson notable absentees from the elite
64-player event, 65th-ranked Sterne, Piercy (66th) and Aphibarnrat
(67th) were handed spots in the draw.
(Reporting by Mark Lamport-Stokes in Los Angeles;
editing by Ian
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