Tiger Woods makes Couples happy: to play in Fall Series event

Tiger Woods will play in a PGA Tour Fall Series event in October

Tiger Woods made his U.S. Presidents Cup captain, Fred Couples, a happy man when he announced Monday he would play in October’s Frys.com Open, a PGA Tour Fall Series event.

The October 6-October 9 tourney at CordeValle Golf Club in San Martin, Calif., is about 40 miles from Stanford University, where Woods spent two years as an undergraduate before turning pro in 1996. It will be the 35-year-old golfers’ first appearance at the tournament and likely the only official one between his last match — a missed cut at the PGA Championship earlier this month — and his showing at the Australian Open in November, a week before the Presidents Cup tilt.

“I always enjoy competing in my home state, and this tournament fits my schedule perfectly,” Woods said on his website.

Couples, who said last week he had made Woods a wild-card pick for the 12-player Prez Cup squad despite Tiger’s lackluster play since returning from injuries to the Bridgestone Invitational earlier this month, had urged the former No. 1 to play more golf before his Aussie venture.

“I really want [Woods] on the team based on, in my opinion, that he’s been the best player 10 straight years,” Couples told reporters two weeks ago. “[But] he needs to play a little bit. He can’t just show up the week before in Australia. I think he’s way up on the list to be chosen to play.”

Woods, who failed to qualify for the ongoing FedEx Cup playoff series, suggested  a week ago that he might play in a tour contest following the Tour Championship. He said Monday that he had “heard good things” about Frys and its venue.

“One of my goals this year was to participate in a tournament I hadn’t played before, and now, I will,” he said.

Robert Trent Jones Sr. designed CordeValle, which opened in 1999. The Frys.com Open moved to the course from Grayhawk Golf Club in Scottsdale, Ariz., last year.

Woods also noted he looked forward to teeing it up with old friend Rocco Mediate, who will try to defend his 2010 title and who famously lost to a broken-legged Woods in the 2008 U.S. Open.

“Any time Rocco is in the field, it’s always fun,” Woods said.

Woods will make his ninth official start of the 2011 season. Out of action for three months while recovering from injuries to his left knee and Achilles tendon, the world’s 38th-ranked golfer said he looked forward to the challenge.

“It’s been a long time between the PGA and Frys, and I’ll be anxious to compete,” he said.

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