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Bubba Watson struggles with focus, not game

Even moments that like have taught him that he needs to rein in his racing thoughts.

"I've just got to keep grinding away and keep trying to stay focused - somehow something has got to click when I stay focused," he said. "That's what I have to learn. The physical part of the game, I have all the shots. I'm not saying I'm going to be No. 1 in the world, but that's my goal. If I can stay focused, I have a better shot at it."


NICE PAR: The cheer behind the 12th green was loud enough to signal a hole-in-one. Jose Coceres had to settle for par.

Coceres hit a 6 iron into the water right of the 184-yard, par-3 hole off the tee, so he had to go to the drop area. His 99-yard third shot with a sand wedge took a hop and disappeared into the cup for a par, although the Argentine celebrated as if it were an ace. He raised both arms in the air, removed his cap and took a bow.

"Very nice. A very good par - with no putter," he said with a smile.


NO MORE ZACH: The first round of the Memorial tournament started with word that Phil Mickelson was withdrawing because of a wrist injury. It ended with another top player leaving the course.

Masters champion Zach Johnson withdrew due to strep throat after hitting his drive on the 16th hole.

Johnson got a ride to the clubhouse, where he consulted with a doctor. Then he slowly walked to his waiting car.

"I can hardly talk," he said before departing, pointing to his throat.


DEFENDING CHAMP: Last year's Memorial winner, Carl Pettersson, actually improved on his first-round score from 2006. He shot a 68, a stroke better than a year ago, when he finished 67-69-71 to get to 12-under 276 and win by two shots over Brett Wetterich and Johnson.

Unlike a year ago, he was recognized as he moved around the course.

"Yeah, it was nice," he said. "A few guys shouting 'Go champ!' and stuff like that. It was nice to play well and get off to a good start."


QUOTE OF THE DAY: Phil Mickelson, after withdrawing because of an injury to his left wrist: "I'm not really worried yet, no. It's never happened before, so I'm not really sure what to think of it."


DIVOTS: The Memorial hadn't had three or more players tied for the first-round lead since 1998. ... Wetterich, tied for second a year ago, shot a 77, tied for worst on the day. ... Mickelson's withdrawal was only the second of his career. He bowed out of the 2004 Las Vegas Invitational because of food poisoning. ... Lucas Glover also withdrew, because of back spasms.

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