Singh Could Have No 1 on Horizon


NORTON, Mass. -- The rankings say one thing. Vijay Singh knows otherwise.
When I tee it up, I think nobody is going to beat me, the presumptive player of the year said of his chances of taking over the No. 1 world ranking this week. Thats the way youve got to think in this game'or any game, for that matter.
Singh could take over the top spot if he finishes higher than Tiger Woods at the Deutsche Bank Championship. Considering that Singh is playing better than anyone'winning five times this year, including the PGA Championship'many consider it a matter of time before he knocks Woods out of the spot he has held for a record 264 consecutive weeks.
Im tired of listening to that, really, Singh said after a pre-tournament Pro-Am Thursday at the par-71, 7,415-yard TPC of Boston course. Im just going to try to enjoy it. I think that focus has been out of my mind for two or three months already now and Im not going to think about it.
If it happens this week, its fine. Sooner or later, someone is going to overtake that. If its not me, its Ernie Els or somebody else. If I play well this week, its going to take care of itself.
Woods has more than the rankings on his mind as he prepares for the tournament: His father has had a relapse of prostate cancer.
Its been tough, Woods said. Its just like it was back in 96 and 97, when my dad had a heart attack and had complications with heart surgery.
No one has been more influential in making Woods the golfer he is than his father, Earl, who taught his toddler to swing a club and then, when Tiger was a junior golfer, would jangle coins or shout during his backswing to toughen the kid up.
The elder Woods was diagnosed with prostate cancer six years ago; radiation treatment was believed to be successful. But Earl Woods told a group of children at a clinic for the Tiger Woods Foundation on Wednesday that the cancer had come back and spread throughout his body, forming lesions in his back and a tumor behind his left eye.
My eye was literally pushed out of the socket, the 73-year-old Woods told the Boston Herald. The pain was so bad, it was past being a headache. Theres no such thing as a headache like that. Every beat of my heart, there was pain.
Earl Woods said the tumor has been eradicated by radiation and hes feeling better. That is making Tiger feel better, too.
He was concerned. And I knew how much he was concerned, the elder Woods told the newspaper. When I initially told him, he was very quiet. And he looked at me and said, Pop, when I was a little kid, you promised me you were going to be here until (age) 84. Im going to hold you to it.
And I said, Youve got it. Ill be here.
Neither had spoken about Earl Woods relapse before Wednesday. Tiger Woods was less talkative on the subject of his fathers health; asked about how much it was weighing on his mind as he played, he said only: A lot.
The Tiger Woods Foundation, created by father and son to promote the heath, education and welfare of children in America, is the primary charitable beneficiary of the tournament. In its first year in 2003, Adam Scott won and Woods tied for seventh.
Woods, who serves as a sort of unofficial host for the tournament, is hoping that the friendly surroundings will help him snap out of what has been called a slump. Although he has won just once this year, hes finished in the top 10 in seven of his last nine tournaments'five times in the top five'and hes still fourth on the money list with more than $4.1 million in earnings this year.
And, according to the rankings at least, Woods is still the No. 1 player in the world.
Related Links:
  • Leaderbaord- Deutsche Bank Championship
  • Full Coverage - Deutsche Bank Championship
    Copyright 2004 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.