The first event of the tour's annual Middle East swing, which
also includes the Qatar Masters and Dubai Desert Classic, starts
on Thursday and features Mickelson and three other golfers from
the world's top 10 — Henrik Stenson, Rory McIlroy and Sergio
American left-hander Mickelson, ranked fifth in the world, will
be making his second appearance in Abu Dhabi having tied for
37th place in 2011.
Twelve months ago Welshman Jamie Donaldson claimed the biggest
tournament victory of his career, eclipsing a strong field
including McIlroy and 14-times major winner Tiger Woods to lift
the coveted Falcon Trophy.
"It was a great win last year," Donaldson told the tour website
(www.europeantour.com). "Going back anywhere that you've played
and won before is really good."
World number three Stenson will be the highest-ranked player in
this week's field.
Northern Irishman McIlroy, ranked seventh, has only been outside
the top 11 once in six previous appearances but the player with
the best record in Abu Dhabi is Ryder Cup hero Martin Kaymer.
German Kaymer has won the Falcon Trophy three times in 2008,
2010 and 2011.
(Writing by Tony Jimenez; editing by Josh Reich)
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