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Players Cup golfers get in some practice at Pine Ridge

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WINNIPEG -- It's the quiet before the storm -- of birdies -- today at the Players Cup at Pine Ridge Golf Club.

The Canadian Tour field has the entire day for practice at the Donald Ross layout, which is celebrating its 100th year.

The fireworks figure to get going on Thursday, when play in the 72-hole championship begins at 7:30 a.m. Thursday tee times can be found here.

Pine Ridge is not long by tour standards: 6,591 yards on the tournament card at par 71.

"You can make a lot of birdies," said Abbotsford, B.C.'s Nick Taylor after a practice round this morning. "I remember last year I made a ton of birdies but I also made a ton of bogeys. With the greens and how they're set up and with the pins they'll have, you'll have opportunities for birdies, but if you put your ball in the wrong spot, you'll make a bogey in a second.

"It's short in yardage, but you don't hit a lot of drivers so it equals out on a lot of holes. Just keep it in play and you have to have good distance control here. The greens have tough spots so you have to be in the right spot."

The contoured greens at Pine Ridge were quicker today than earlier in the week, and figure to be headed towards tour-preferred fast and firm if the hot weather continues into the weekend.

Taylor, the former No. 1-ranked amateur in the world, is among six Canadians who occupy the top 10 of the Canadian Tour's money list this season. He's seventh at $16,425. Money-leader Matt Hill of Sarnia, Ont. ($43,300), is also here this week, coming off his playoff victory last weekend in Saskatoon.

Tickets for the championship are available online at www.theplayerscup.ca. The $20 pass is good for all four days of play and public parking for the event is next to the course -- just follow the signs off Garven Road.

tim.campbell@freepress.mb.ca

 

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