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GOLF ROUNDUP

Pampling Leads by One

March 07, 2003|From Associated Press

Rod Pampling knows better than to get excited about leading after one round, although he wasn't about to trade his eight-under-par 64 Thursday in the Ford Championship at Doral.

Pampling made it look easy on the course known as the Blue Monster with eight birdies, only one of them longer than 12 feet, to take a one-stroke lead over Bob Tway on a breezy day in Miami.

It was the first time Pampling has led after one round of a PGA Tour-sanctioned event since his even-par 71 in the 1999 British Open.

Pampling is the only player in the 142-year history of the British Open to lead after the first round and miss the cut. He had an 86 in the second round.

"Obviously, it wasn't great," Pampling said. "It really didn't bother me because I knew I didn't play bad, the conditions were just unbelievably tough. You gradually progress in the game and learn to deal with different things."

Scott Hoch and Thomas Levet were at 66, while Carlos Franco was in the group at 67.

Jack Nicklaus, 63, birdied the last two holes for a one-over 73, which left him nine strokes out of the lead but better off than several players half his age.

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Ernie Els shot a six-under-par 66 and was one stroke behind Scotland's Alistair Forsyth after the first round of the $1.9-million Dubai Desert Classic at Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

Tiger Woods pulled out of the event because of a possible U.S.-led attack of Iraq.

Mark O'Meara opened with a four-under 68 and was tied for ninth.

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