Daly Singh Headline in Abu Dhabi

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2006 Abu Dhabi Golf ChampionshipJohn Daly makes his 2006 debut Thursday when he competes in the inaugural ' and star-studded ' Abu Dhabi Golf Championship.
 
Daly, a two-time major championship winner, is just one of several golfing luminaries on hand at the Abu Dhabi Golf Club competing for the $2 million purse.
 
Daly is joined by world No. 2 Vijay Singh, world No. 6 Sergio Garcia and world No. 10 Colin Montgomerie. Chris DiMarco, Thomas Bjorn and Miguel Angel Jimenez are also in attendance.
 
This is Daly's first competition since breaking his right hand in November.
 
'The hand's fine,' Daly said last week. 'I've been able to hit a few balls, but I've only played about 18 holes.'
 
Singh made the trip from Hawaii, where he wrapped up a two-tournament set to kick-start the PGA Tour season. He lost in a playoff to Stuart Appleby at the Mercedes Championships two weeks ago and then finished sixth last week at the Sony Open.
 
He may have more than stiff competition to face this week; he may have to battle jet lag, as well.
 
From Hawaii to San Francisco to London to here. It's a long one, said Singh, who made the trip commercially. The flying time wasn't that bad. I think five (hours) to San Francisco, I think ten and a half to London and then I think six or seven hours to here. But that seven hour layoff in San Francisco was the worst one.
 
Despite being a little low on energy, Singh is still high on expectations.
 
I expect to play well. I don't know if I'm going to win, but I didn't come all the way here to finish second, said Singh, who is also playing in next weeks Qatar Masters.
 
This is the sixth counting event on the 2006 European Tour schedule, and the first of three straight tournaments in the Middle East. After next weeks Qatar Masters, the tour will head to the United Arab Emirates for the Dubai Desert Classic.
 
With the quality of fields over the next few weeks, it will be a good opportunity for players to rack up some European Ryder Cup points.
 
I'm not on the team yet, but I'm pretty close, said Garcia, who is currently second on the Ryder Cup World Points list. So I know that you have to play decent and I will make it by myself, and that's the main goal. Hopefully I'll be able to achieve that soon.
 
Montgomerie, who topped last years Order of Merit, currently leads the World Points list.
 
I've got a good head start; I'm almost there, really, he said. So we just have to be safe and play reasonably and we'll be there.
 
The Ryder Cup will take place Sept. 22-24 at The K Club in Straffan, County Kildare, Ireland.
 
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