Stars chasing Stadler and Fasth in Shanghai

Mickelson is playing his second straight event in Asia - and his first in China. He finished in a disappointing tie for 23rd place last weekend in Singapore - 16 shots behind winner Angel Cabrera.

Mickelson, who heads home after this event, blamed his poor finish in Singapore on "a bit of a virus'' over the weekend, which was made worse by the tropical heat in Singapore. He said this week he's "nearly 100 percent.''

"I want to spend more time in Asia,'' Mickelson said. "I feel like I'm learning a lot. My kids are with me and they're learning a lot, too. The quality of golf course here is every bit as good as the States.''

"Mickelson played with China's best player - Liang Wenchong. Liang shot 69 and impressed the two-time Masters champion.

"I was very pleased with Liang, he's a wonderful player,'' Mickelson said. "I think he's got some great things to come.''

The HSBC tournament has drawn 10 of the world's top 20 players. Though it's still 2007, the HSBC event is also the first of the 2008 PGA European Tour season, which has become a 12-month season without a break.

"This is the best scenario we can have on the European Tour to get these tournaments in where there is room on the schedule,'' Fasth said. "Yes, they are on the wrong side of New Year's Eve, but this is the way it goes these days.''

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