Wednesday, April 23, 2008

SHANGHAI, China (AP) — Greg Norman makes a rare return to tournament golf at the Asian Open this week, four years after being disqualified from this event.

Norman, 53, will take on a strong field in the $2.3 million event at Tomson Shanghai Pudong Golf Club, including two-time U.S. Open champion Retief Goosen, world No. 13 Henrik Stenson and defending champion Raphael Jacquelin.

It will be the first tournament for Norman — a two-time British Open champion — since South Africa late last year, when he finished ahead of the likes of Goosen and Ernie Els.

Norman will be looking to put the 2004 Asian Open behind him. He was among the leaders when he was disqualified in the third round for an incorrect drop.

Norman, who is playing on a sponsor's invitation, said he probably gets more nervous these days when approaching the first tee.

"When you don't play a lot, it's not as routine as it used to be," he said.

Stenson will be looking to reclaim the top ranking in the European Tour Order of Merit after being overtaken by U.S. Masters champion Trevor Immelman. The Swede lost this tournament in a playoff in 2006 after being in a strong position during the final round.

Among other players in the European Tour and Asian Tour jointly sanctioned event were Miguel Angel Jimenez of Spain, 2005 U.S. Open champion Michael Campbell and Asian Order of Merit leader Mark Brown of New Zealand.

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