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Cold weather expected to be a factor at Match Play

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MARANA, Ariz. – Break out the sweaters, snoods and snow caps – a winter storm warning is in effect here for Wednesday’s opening round of the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship.

Sound familiar?

Indeed, it feels like 2011 again, when freezing temperatures, overnight snowfall and a sleet-coated fairway awaited Luke Donald and Martin Kaymer when they arrived at Dove Mountain for the final match.


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On Wednesday, the temperature is expected to barely crawl above 45 degrees, with rain showers and 15-25 mph winds (gusts up to 35). There is even a chance of snow in the late afternoon.

“I think the guys in the morning are going to be like icicles on the way in,” said Rory McIlroy, who tees off at 12:05 p.m. local time.

The rest of the week should be rain-free, though morning temperatures are expected to be in the mid- to upper-30s before warming up to around 60 in the afternoon. Frost could delay the start of Friday’s matches.

“This is a tournament where it really doesn’t matter,” defending champion Hunter Mahan said. “You’re just trying to beat the guy in front of you, whether that’s with a 68 or a 78.”

Joked Tiger Woods, “Well, I guess we won’t be working on our suntans.”