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Kuchar jumps at chance to play World Cup

Some of the top Americans have been bailing out on the World Cup since it changed formats and moved to China. Matt Kuchar sees nothing but a "cool opportunity."

Kuchar, who is No. 12 in the world ranking, has accepted a spot on the U.S. team and will be joined by Gary Woodland. The World Cup is Thanksgiving week, Nov. 24-27, at Mission Hills in China. It will be held the week after the Presidents Cup in Australia

Kuchar played in the World Amateur Team Championship in 1998 when he was at Georgia Tech, and he played in the Walker Cup the following year. He did not represent his country again until the Ryder Cup last year.

"I think to be one of those two guys representing your country is really an honor," he said.

Woodland is No. 38 in the world, a winner this year in Tampa and a rising talent in the American ranks who is known for his power.

"I think he's going to be a guy we are going to see more and more playing some great golf," Kuchar said. "And so I'm pretty excited to have a guy that plays as well as he does and hits it as far as he does as my partner. I think I can be the steady one that makes a lot of pars and watch him just make golf look pretty easy."

STAT OF THE WEEK: Eleven of the 35 rookies on the PGA Tour qualified for the FedEx Cup playoffs.

Two share lead at Ballantyne event

The tricky greens at The Golf Club at Ballantyne plagued several players during Tuesday's second round of the Teaching and Club Professionals National Championship, but Lori Atsedes and Amanda McCurdy prevailed to take a one-stroke lead.

Atsedes of Litchfield Park, Ariz., and McCurdy of Mansfield, Texas shot matching 71-71s to finish with two-day totals of even-par 144.

A former contestant on the Golf Channel's Big Break Kaanapali, Atsedes had an up-and-down day but finished with two consecutive birdies to get a share of the lead heading into today's final round.

LPGA Tour veteran Maggie Will of Raleigh, playing in her first T&CP National Championship, shot rounds of 70-73 to sit in third place at one over par.

The round of the day in the championship division was turned in by Pinehurst resident Charlaine Hirst, who had five birdies, a bogey and a double-bogey en route to a two-under par 69.

Carolyn Hill of St. Petersburg, Fla., followed her first-round 70 with a two-under 69 to maintain her lead in the senior division (50-over). News Services

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