Continued from page 1

“It feels different because you’ve got the best three players in the world here this week,” said seventh-ranked Rory McIlory, who is also playing in Dubai. “Plenty of points up for grabs and plenty to play for. Westwood could be No. 1, Kaymer could be No. 1. Not sure if Tiger could quite get to No. 1 with a win. It’s great.”

Woods won in Dubai in 2006 and 2008 but did not play here last year. He played in a pro-am on Wednesday.

“They (the greens) are running very true,” said Woods, who lagged behind on several holes Wednesday to practice his putting and chipping.

“We’ll see what happens as the tournament progresses, see if they dry out or not because they have the potential of being pretty firm,” he said. “You know, today, this morning, it was pretty soft … I suspect if you get any kind of wind or warm weather, it will dry them out and it will be a really good test come this weekend.”