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World No. 1 Luke Donald in Northern Trust Open field

February 10, 2012 |  3:00 pm

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Luke Donald, ranked No. 1 in the world, will make his United States and PGA Tour debut next week when he plays in the Northern Trust Open at Riviera Country Club.

Defending champion Aaron Baddeley will try to become the seventh player in tournament history to win back-to-back titles. The last man to do it, Phil Mickelson (in 2008-09) is also in the field.

Fan favorite Fred Couples will also be in the tournament and trying to win for his third time (he won in 1992 and 1994).

2011 PGA Tour rookie of the year Keegan Bradley is also in the field and will make his second career start at the Northern Trust Open. Bradley burst onto the scene in 2011 with two victories, first at the HP Byron Nelson Championship and then again in dramatic fashion at the PGA Championship. He became the first player to win in his first-career start in a major championship since Ben Curtis at the 2003 British Open and the first rookie to win twice on TOUR, including a major, since Todd Hamilton in 2004. Bradley missed the cut last year in his first start at the Northern Trust Open.

“On the eve of the 2012 Northern Trust Open, we’re thrilled with the way our field has taken shape,” said Executive Director Jerry West. “Our defending champion Aaron Baddeley will have a tall task in his attempt to repeat, as the field features many of the biggest names in golf."

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-- Diane Pucin

Photo: Luke Donald plays a shot on the first hole at the Abu Dhabi Championship on Jan. 28. Credit: Shijilesh Ulleri / Associated Press

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