War tension forces Woods to skip Dubai meet

CARLSBAD (California): Tiger Woods will not play at next week's Dubai Desert Classic golf tournament, saying the region is not safe with United States troops massing for possible warfare in Iraq. 

“It's not a safe environment,” Woods said. “It wouldn't be wise for me to go at this time. I wanted to go. If it's safe next year, I will go back.” 

Woods said he does plan to attend the British Open in July and would not rule out all international travel. But he is wary. 

“Going overseas this year, especially to that part of the world, is a little tough,” Woods said. “If it was more safe, I would go. But it is not.” 

Australia's Adam Scott and Scotland's Colin Montgomerie have also pulled out of the Dubai event. Montgomerie will play in Miami. Scott will take a week off and play in Florida in two weeks rather than defend his Qatar Masters crown. 

Woods is expected to take two weeks off and return on March 20 at the Bay Hill Invitational in Orlando, where he lives, then compete in the Players Championship and rest one more week before defending his title at the Masters. – AFP 

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