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Tiger Woods (right) will not compete in the WGC Match Play Championship this month. - EPA
LOS ANGELES (AFP): Tiger Woods made it official on Thursday, confirming on his website that he'll skip the WGC Match Play Championship this month.
The world number one announced that his next tournament will be the US PGA Tour's Honda Classic in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, February 27-March 2.
After that he'll play the World Golf Championships Cadillac Championship at Doral near Miami, and the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill in Orlando - in both of which he is the defending champion.
The WGC-Cadillac is March 6-9, and the Palmer Invitational is March 20-23.
That will then give Woods some time off before he tackles the first major of the year, the Masters at Augusta National April 10-13.
"The Honda Classic is close to my home, and I want to support it whenever I can," Woods said. "We have a Learning Center at Murray Middle School in Stuart, Florida, and this event does so much to help the community, including the efforts of the Nicklaus Children's Health Care Foundation.
Woods' victory in the Arnold Palmer Invitational last year was his eighth title at Bay Hill, and vaulted him back to number one in the world for the first time since 2010.
"I'm also excited about spending time with Arnold and defending my title at his tournament and the WGC-Cadillac. I'm looking forward to seeing what they've done at Doral," Woods said.
Although he is a three-time winner of the WGC Match Play, Woods's decision to skip it had been expected.
Even though original plans to travel to Sochi to watch girlfriend Lindsey Vonn have fallen by the wayside because of the knee injury that forced Vonn out of the Winter Games, Woods said he decided to use the week to get ready for the later events closer to his Florida home.
"I had planned to take that week off and travel with Lindsey to Sochi, but unfortunately that won't happen," Woods said. "Instead, I'll stay home and prepare for the Florida tournaments."
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