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Patient Scott shares Australian Masters lead, Kuchar lurks

By Ian Ransom MELBOURNE (Reuters) - Defending champion Adam Scott was patience personified as he grafted to a share of the lead at the Australian Masters, while American Matt Kuchar moved quietly into contention after the second round on Friday. U.S. Masters champion Scott was rock-solid on another blustery day at Royal Melbourne, shooting a flawless five-under 66 for a nine-under total of 133 and a one-shot lead with local surprise package Nathan Holman.

Golf: Presidents Cup resumes at soggy Muirfield Village

The Presidents Cup golf matches resumed Saturday after heavy rain drenched Muirfield Village for the third afternoon in a row, leaving the course swamped and players annoyed. The United States led the Internationals 6 1/2-5 1/2 with five four-ball matches on the soggy course. Golfers were using lift, clean and place rules and at times playing in heavy downpours. "It's testing everyone's patience," Internationals captain Nick Price said. "As soon as we dry out, the next squall comes through. I just hope we can finish so we can get a result."

Golf: McDowell seeks boost ahead of British Open

Graeme McDowell is hoping a trip to France this week will give his golf game the boost it badly needs ahead of the British Open at Muirfield, Scotland which starts on July 18. The 2010 US Open winner has signed up for the European Tour's French Open following another missed cut, this time on home turf at last week's Irish Open at Maynooth. The early weekend at Carton House was the fifth in his last six strokeplay events for the 33-year-old.

Memorial win gives Kuchar a major boost for Merion

By Mark Lamport-Stokes ARDMORE, Pennsylvania (Reuters) - Matt Kuchar has an extra spring in his step for this week's U.S. Open, having been installed among the favorites for the year's second major after winning the elite Memorial Tournament 10 days ago. Though Kuchar has yet to claim one of golf's four blue riband events, he has triumphed at every other level in the game and likes his chances heading into Thursday's opening round at Merion Golf Club.

Golf: Kuchar ready for major breakthrough

The pressure is growing on Matt Kuchar to win one of golf's biggest prizes at the US Open this week as he starts to join the best player not to have won a major listings. The 34-year-old American has been touted as a major champion since he won the US amateur championship in 1997, the year after Tiger Woods did so. But after a bright start to his pro career when he won the Honda Classic in 2002, he has struggled at times to fulfill his potential, dropping down to the second tier Nationwide Tour briefly in 2006.

Fickle shifting winds give players a Memorial headache

By Mark Lamport-Stokes DUBLIN, Ohio (Reuters) - Trying to trust unpredictable winds was the biggest problem for the players in Saturday's third round at the Memorial Tournament, as Americans Matt Kuchar and Kevin Chappell found out to their cost. Kuchar bogeyed the par-five 15th after his three-wood second shot drifted unexpectedly to the right of the green, ending up in a creek he never realized was there.

Golf-Hard times help Kuchar savour winning even more

By Mark Lamport-Stokes MARANA, Arizona, Feb 25 (Reuters) - A seven-year victory drought on the PGA Tour helped American Matt Kuchar appreciate the difficulty of winning, and made his triumph at the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship on Sunday taste even sweeter. Kuchar was a gifted collegiate golfer who, as an amateur in 1998, tied for 21st at the Masters and 14th at the U.S. Open but he learned the hard way how inaccessible the winner's circle can be after turning professional in 2000.

Golf: Kuchar downs Mahan to win WGC Match Play crown

Matt Kuchar denied Hunter Mahan a World Golf Championships Match Play Championship title repeat, triumphing over his fellow American 2 and 1 in Sunday's final at Dove Mountain. Kuchar, eliminated by Mahan in the quarter-finals of the elite 64-man event last year, avenged that defeat as he prevented Mahan from joining Tiger Woods as the only back-to-back winners of the title. "What an incredible feeling to be standing on top after six matches. I really have to give Hunter a lot of credit," Kuchar said.

Golf-Losing Match Play finalist Mahan proud of 'great run'

By Mark Lamport-Stokes MARANA, Arizona, Feb 24 (Reuters) - Hunter Mahan came up agonisingly short in his bid to complete a successful title defence at the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship on Sunday but felt he had become a better player than he was a year ago. Until he went one-down to eventual winner Matt Kuchar at the par-four fourth in the final, Mahan had completed 169 consecutive holes without trailing in a run dating back to the opening round of last year's tournament.

Golf-Kuchar wins Match Play title

By Mark Lamport-Stokes MARANA, Arizona, Feb 24 (Reuters) - Matt Kuchar derailed Hunter Mahan's bid to win back-to-back titles at the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship with a 2&1 victory over his fellow American in the final on Sunday. Four up after nine holes on a chilly afternoon of biting winds at Dove Mountain, Kuchar fended off a late Mahan fightback before sealing the win at the par-four 17th where his opponent took four shots to reach the green.
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