16th hole center of action at Phoenix Open

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Perhaps the best face on his work is fellow tour player Jarrod Lyle.

Lyle was diagnosed with leukemia as a teenager and vividly recalls the inspiration he received from Allenby coming to see him in the hospital. Seven years later, they played a practice round in the British Open at Hoylake.

“I’m very humbled, very honored,” Allenby said. “But nothing has changed with the cause. We’re still trying to help children with cancer.”

Allenby will be honored April 9 at the GWAA’s awards dinner in Augusta, Ga.

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BIKINIS AND BIRDIES: The tournament has added a beach area, complete with lifeguards, to the Greenskeeper complex on the west side of the lake on the par-4 18th.

The venue also features 30 cabanas, a super suite and a multiple viewing decks.

The forecast high for the first round Thursday is 77. It is expected to be in 60s the final three days, with highs of 69 on Friday, 66 on Saturday and 65 on Sunday.

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DIVOTS: An estimated 525,821 fans attended the tournament last year, setting records for the second round at 121,901 and the third round with 179,022. The crowd of 62,234 on Wednesday set a record for the pro-am. … The action doesn’t end when the sun goes down. O.A.R., Jake Owen, Weezer and MetalHead are the featured acts at the Birds Nest across the street from the main entrance. … After the tournament, the City of Scottsdale will begin a $15 million project to modernize the city-owned course and clubhouse. Course designer Tom Weiskopf will reposition three greens and expand several others. Several tees and bunkers also will be repositioned and renovated and the irrigation system will be upgraded. … Arizona State freshman Ki Taek Lee shot a 7-under 65 on Monday at McCormick Ranch to earn a spot in the field. Chris Smith and Danny Lee also qualified.

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