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Tiger Woods (Credit: Tiger Woods Press Conference/Getty Images)

Tiger Woods

PGA Championship contenders

A look at 20 of the top contenders for the 2011 PGA Championship. Capsules written by the Associated Press.

LEE WESTWOOD Age: 38. Country: England. World ranking:
(Credit: Getty Images)

LEE WESTWOOD
Age: 38.
Country: England.
World ranking: 2.
Worldwide wins: 34.
Best 2011 performance: Wins at Ballantines Championship, Indonesian Masters
Majors: None.
2011 majors: Masters-T11, US Open-T3, British Open-Cut.
Backspin: The last player to shed label as ìbest to have never won a majorî at the PGA Championship was Davis Love III in 1997 at Winged Foot. Westwood has been in contention far too often at majors not to get it done. Plus, a win gives agent Chubby Chandler the Grand Slam.

STEVE STRICKER Age: 44. Country: United States. World
(Credit: Getty Images)

STEVE STRICKER
Age: 44.
Country: United States.
World ranking: 4.
Worldwide wins: 11.
Best 2011 performance: Wins at Memorial, John Deere Classic.
Majors: None.
2011 majors: Masters-T11, US Open-T19, British Open-T12.
Backspin: Has done everything he could have imagined in his career except winning a major. His window is starting to close, but five wins in the last two years show that he still has time.

TIGER WOODS Age: 35. Country: United States. World
(Credit: AP)

TIGER WOODS
Age: 35.
Country: United States.
World ranking: 28.
Worldwide wins: 82.
Best 2011 performance: T4 at the Masters.
Majors: Masters (1997, 2001, 2002, 2005), U.S. Open (2000, 2002, 2008), British Open (2000, 2005, 2006), PGA Championship (1999, 2000, 2006, 2007).
2011 majors: Masters-T4, US Open-DNP, British Open-DNP.
Backspin: Hard to picture him having a chance to win since he only just returns from a three-month break. He can catch Nicklaus - not in majors, but with a fifth Wanamaker Trophy.

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LUKE DONALD Age: 33. Country: England. World ranking:
(Credit: AP )

LUKE DONALD
Age: 33.
Country: England.
World ranking: 1.
Worldwide wins: 8.
Best 2011 performance: Wins at Match Play Championship, BMW PGA Championship, Scottish Open.
Majors: None.
2011 majors: Masters-T4, US Open-T45, British Open-Cut.
Backspin: No one has ever won Europe’s PGA Championship and America’s PGA Championship in the same year. Doesn’t need to win a major to prove why he's No. 1, but it certainly would cut back on the chatter.

PHIL MICKELSON Age: 41. Country: United States. World
(Credit: AP)

PHIL MICKELSON
Age: 41.
Country: United States.
World ranking: 6.
Worldwide wins: 41.
Best 2011 performance: Win at the Houston Open.
Majors: Masters (2004, 2006, 2010), PGA Championship (2005).
2011 majors: Masters-T27, US Open-T54, British Open-T2.
Backspin: He used to be unpredictable before a shot. Now he’s hard to figure out before the tournament even starts. Showed at the British Open that his game is capable of showing up without warning. Has second-lowest score in major championship history at Atlanta Athletic Club.

MARTIN KAYMER Age: 26. Country: Germany. World ranking:
(Credit: Getty Images)

MARTIN KAYMER
Age: 26.
Country: Germany.
World ranking: 3.
Worldwide wins: 9.
Best 2011 performance: 8-shot win at the Abu Dhabi Championship.
Majors: PGA Championship (2010).
2011 majors: Masters-Cut, US Open-T39, British Open-T12.
Backspin: Can join Tiger Woods as the only players to repeat at PGA Championship in stroke play. Only two top-10s in stroke play since he won Abu Dhabi to start the season.

DUSTIN JOHNSON Age: 27. Country: United States. World
(Credit: Getty Images)

DUSTIN JOHNSON
Age: 27.
Country: United States.
World ranking: 7.
Worldwide wins: 4.
Best 2011 performance: Runner-up at World Golf Championship at Doral and British Open.
Majors: None.
2011 majors: Masters-T38, US Open-T23, British Open-T2.
Backspin: Surprising that he has not won yet this year. Has shown the ability to bounce back from major failures, but they’re starting to pile up.

NICK WATNEY Age: 30. Country: United States. World
(Credit: Getty Images)

NICK WATNEY
Age: 30.
Country: United States.
World ranking: 9.
Worldwide wins: 4.
Best 2011 performance: Wins at World Golf Championship at Doral, AT&T National.
Majors: None.
2011 majors: Masters-46, US Open-Cut, British Open-Cut
Backspin: Having the kind of year that makes him an elite player - except the majors, which define great players.

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K.J. CHOI Age: 41. Country: South Korea. World
(Credit: AP)

K.J. CHOI
Age: 41.
Country: South Korea.
World ranking: 13.
Worldwide wins: 16.
Best 2011 performance: Won The Players Championship.
Majors: None.
2011 majors: Masters-T8, US Open-Cut, British Open-T44.
Backspin: Only three players have won a major after winning The Players Championship - Jack Nicklaus (1978), Hal Sutton (1983) and Tiger Woods (2001).

DARREN CLARKE Age: 42. Country: Northern Ireland. World
(Credit: AP )

DARREN CLARKE
Age: 42.
Country: Northern Ireland.
World ranking: 31.
Worldwide wins: 18.
Best 2011 performance: Winning the British Open.
Majors: British Open (2011).
2011 majors: Masters-DNP, US Open-DNP, British Open-Win. Backspin: Just like Tiger Woods, will be playing on his second major this year. Players who win a major tend to do well in them the rest of the year.

RORY MCILROY Age: 22. Country: Northern Ireland. World
(Credit: Getty Images)

RORY MCILROY
Age: 22.
Country: Northern Ireland.
World ranking: 5.
Worldwide wins: 3.
Best 2011 performance: Winning the U.S. Open.
Majors: U.S. Open (2011).
2011 majors: Masters-T15, US Open-Win, British Open-T25.
Backspin: Back on home soil, so to speak. Said at the British Open that he prefers sunny, calm conditions in the 80s. Might be closer to 90 in Atlanta.

CHARL SCHWARTZEL Age: 26. Country: South Africa. World
(Credit: Getty Images)

CHARL SCHWARTZEL
Age: 26.
Country: South Africa.
World ranking: 10.
Worldwide wins: 7.
Best 2011 performance: Winning the Masters.
Majors: Masters (2011).
2011 majors: Masters-Win, US Open-T9, British Open-T16.
Backspin: Last player to win the Masters and PGA Championship in the same year was Jack Nicklaus in 1975.

JASON DAY Age: 23. Country: Australia. World ranking:
(Credit: Getty Images)

JASON DAY
Age: 23.
Country: Australia.
World ranking: 8.
Worldwide wins: 1.
Best 2011 performance: Runner-up at the Masters (by a little) and the U.S. Open (by a lot).
Majors: None.
2011 majors: Masters-T2, US Open-2, British Open-T30.
Backspin: An explosive talent who looked like he was ready in the spring. Has played only twice the last two months.

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RICKIE FOWLER Age: 22. Country: United States. World
(Credit: AP )

RICKIE FOWLER
Age: 22.
Country: United States.
World ranking: 47.
Worldwide wins: None.
Best 2011 performance: Tied for fifth at the British Open.
Majors: None.
2011 majors: Masters-T38, US Open-Cut, British Open-T5.
Backspin: Game might be better suited for links and wind. Has enough flair about him that when he finally gets a win, it could be a big one.

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