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Woods approves of Azinger's revamp for Ryder Cup

SHANGHAI, China -- Tiger Woods likes Paul Azinger's
appointment as Ryder Cup captain and thinks the tweaks to the
selection criteria might help the U.S. team snap its losing streak.

Azinger was introduced as captain this week and immediately
changed the selection process to give himself four picks and base
the first eight spots on prize money earnings.

The amendments "are great," said Woods, who returned from a
five-week break with an even-par 72 Thursday in the opening round
of the HSBC Champions tournament near Shanghai.

"In my ideal world, if you want your best team you have 12
picks. But that's not fair," he said. "The more picks you can
get, the better it is."

Azinger, a former PGA champion and cancer survivor who played in
four Ryder Cups without losing a singles match, was a good choice
as captain, Woods said.

"Paul will be fun. Paul will be great," he said. "He's fiery.
He loves it. He'll do very well as a captain. We'll all have fun
with him."

The U.S. team has lost the Ryder Cup a record three straight
times to Europe.

Azinger's first act as captain was to unveil his changes, which
work off the PGA Tour money list. One point will be awarded for
every $1,000 earned at the four majors in 2007 and tour events in
2008, with double points for the 2008 majors.

Under the previous method, points were quadrupled in the Ryder
Cup year with a 75-point bonus for winning and heavy emphasis on
the majors.

Azinger will get four captain's picks instead of two.

He said his only desire was to get the best players, and he
figured the best way to measure that was money.

The next Ryder Cup match is in 2008 at the Valhalla Golf Club in
Louisville, Ky.