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Preview: ACE Group Classic

 

Kenny Perry puts off knee surgery to play

NAPLES, Fla. (AP) Defending champion Kenny Perry put off surgery on his left knee until next week so he could play in the Champions Tour's ACE Group Classic.

Hampered by torn cartilage, Perry had a cortisone shot about three weeks ago and is scheduled to have surgery Tuesday. He tied for 19th last week in the Allianz Championship.

``It's holding up OK,'' Perry said. ``It's gotten a little better each day. I protected it on a few shots last week, and I hung back. When I do that, I hit big hooks, and it got me in some serious trouble.''

Twenty-eight of the top 30 on the 2012 money list will open play Friday on TwinEagles' Talon Course, with 2009 champion Fred Couples and Corey Pavin skipping the event to play in the PGA Tour's Northern Trust Open.

Two-time Charles Schwab Cup winner Tom Lehman and four-time money champion Bernhard Langer are two of 19 major winners in the field. Langer won the 2011 tournament and finished second last year.

``I like the courses in Florida,'' Langer said. ``I'm used to the grasses and it's generally windy, which makes it difficult. I seem to cope with those conditions fairly well, but you never know in golf. Every day is different, every week is different. That's what it makes it so interesting.''

Lehman tied for third last year.

``Last year being my first, it was a new experience,'' Lehman said. ``I was very impressed with the golf course, with the crowds that came out to watch. It was a very, very fun environment to play golf in, so I'm very happy to be back again this year.''

Rocco Mediate is coming off a victory Sunday in the Allianz in his first start on the 50-and-over tour, while Scott Hoch, the 2008 champion, is returning from a thumb injury that sidelined him all of last year.

``People can say what they want, but you don't really expect that to happen,'' Mediate said. ``Like I said before, I did the work, you prepare all you can prepare, and all that stuff, but you never know when it's going to kick in, and it kicked in.''

Heavy rain stopped play Thursday in the afternoon pro-am after most of the groups played nine holes. More rain is expected Friday.

Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC is strictly prohibited.
 
ACE Group Classic field
Michael AllenTommy Armour IIIJay Don Blake
Mark BrooksOlin BrowneBart Bryant
Brad BryantMark CalcavecchiaRoger Chapman
Bobby ClampettRuss CochranJohn Cook
Ben CrenshawJoe DaleyAllen Doyle
David EgerSteve ElkingtonBrad Faxon
Dan ForsmanJeff FreemanDavid Frost
Fred FunkJim Gallagher, Jr.Bob Gilder
Bill GlassonMike GoodesJay Haas
Gary HallbergDonnie HammondJohn Harris
Morris HatalskyScott HochMike Hulbert
John HustonHale IrwinPeter Jacobsen
Gene JonesSteve JonesTom Kite
Gary KochBernhard LangerTom Lehman
Wayne LeviChie-Hsiang LinSteve Lowery
Chien-Soon LuSandy LyleAndrew Magee
Mark McNultyRocco MediateLarry Mize
Gil MorganMark MoulandLarry Nelson
Mark O'MearaSteve PateDavid Peoples
Tom Pernice, Jr.Kenny PerryTom Purtzer
Dana QuigleyLoren RobertsJim Rutledge
Gene SauersPeter SeniorJay Sigel
Scott SimpsonJoey SindelarJeff Sluman
Craig StadlerHal SuttonJim Thorpe
Esteban ToledoBob TwayBobby Wadkins
Duffy WaldorfD.A. WeibringMark Wiebe
Willie WoodFuzzy Zoeller 
Course: TwinEagles GC (Talon), Par 72 | Yardage: 544
HoleParYardageHoleParYardage
10438314427
11442123207
12319535547
13552044399
14444153177
15439865576
16316274434
17554484463
18445794442