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Golf-Woods enjoys laid back Nicklaus Cup captaincy

MONTREAL, Sep 25 (Reuters) Tiger Woods is looking forward to another Presidents Cup week under the relaxed captaincy of Jack Nicklaus.

Golfing great Nicklaus will lead the Americans at Royal Montreal Golf Club for a fourth time in their biennial team competition against the Internationals.

''Jack has traditionally just let us play,'' world number one Woods said during a teleconference yesterday.

''He gets out of the way. He says: 'Go prepare how you normally prepare for an event.' We have certain team things and certain team rules that we have on his teams.

''But he's very lenient. More than anything, he says: 'Just go get prepared to play.' It's been more hands-off than anything else.'' Woods, appearing in his fifth Presidents Cup, played under 18-times major winner Nicklaus in Australia in 1998, in South Africa in 2003 and in the US in 2005.

The Americans triumphed on only one of those occasions, by 18-{ points to 15-{ at Lake Manassas, Virginia in 2005 when the entire US team was determined to shine for their captain.

''You want to play for him and you want to be on the team that he captains,'' said Woods, whose win-loss-half record at the Presidents Cup is 10-9-1.

''When he does speak, everyone listens because he is the greatest player of all time. You always want to hear what he's going to say.

''But he doesn't speak very often, which makes it very interesting. It's not a rah-rah atmosphere. It's very serious, very focused but also just a lot of fun.'' The Americans have dominated the Ryder Cup-style competition against the Internationals, winning four times and battling to a 17-17 draw in South Africa four years ago.

Their only defeat came in 1998 when the event was staged in Melbourne.

The seventh Presidents Cup starts on Thursday with the opening six foursome matches.

Reuters KK VP0522

Story first published: Tuesday, September 25, 2007, 6:02 [IST]
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