Woods, Thomas start strong at Honda Classic

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Looking ahead, being able to handle the conditions figures to remain a key factor Friday with the Weather Channel forecasting sustained winds around 16 miles per hour. But now, playing tournament golf, I'm starting to get into that flow again. That was the case at last week's Genesis Open at Pacific Palisades, Calif., which prompted Rory McIlroy, after playing a round with Woods, to remark, "I need a couple Advil just to - I've got a headache after all that".

"I just felt like I needed to continue with the things I've been working on". "But I am very happy to get in there with a good score to start out". "I don't remember a lot from previous year because all I was thinking about was winning, but it was a really good experience for me, an unforgettable one". That would have been past year at Torrey Pines, the only time they were in the field. This guy has the kind of game that will allow him to be around for a long time, barring injury. "I'm still learning what that feels like under the gun".

In Doha, and it is look a very even field and that makes a victor hard for sure, but I fancy one of the Scots to go well like Richie Ramsay or Stephen Gallacher. Give him a little bit of time. But I don't think it's imperative. And that part I'm going to have to learn.

"I'm fused, but I'm still learning what that feels like under the gun".

The bigger picture relates to the Masters, which is now little over a month away. The Englishman has four top-10s at the event since 2009, and if he can conjure up some of the old magic, he would make for a tasty outside pick. He does, however, have an outstanding record in the first Major of the year. And there are still those worrying misses from short range on the greens. Having to sit out on the sidelines is not fun.

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The Champion Course at PGA National is one of the toughest on the PGA Tour circuit. This year, it's different. "I always looked up to him".

"I wouldn't necessarily say I'm in catch-up mode".

It used to be that golf decorum dictated spectators be quiet as a church mouse with PGA players at work. I'll take a stab with the Spaniard and +1800 odds. "I hit the ball really well, and it was tough out there". Aside from the handsome prize money available, the top 50 players in the Official World Golf Rankings will automatically qualify for the WGC-Mexico Championship next week, where plenty more riches are up for grabs.

"Feast or starvation, that's what my history's been here", he said.

Offaly golfer Shane Lowry will be hoping for better fortune as he tees off at the Honda Classic on Thursday on the PGA Tour in Florida. He did cash three times in four starts and showed promise (on Bermuda) with 68-74-67 over the final 54 holes in Phoenix for T43. "I was very pleased". Last year's Made in Denmark victor looks high-class and his long game will be a weapon on this layout.