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GOLF ROUNDUP

Putter stutters hurt Woods

Stenson wins in Dubai; Els second

Exasperated by his poor putting, Tiger Woods headed home after one of those rare weeks in which he did not win a tournament.

He finished two strokes behind winner Henrik Stenson in third place yesterday, unable to make a successful title defense at the Dubai Desert Classic before a gallery that included Roger Federer and Michael Schumacher.

Woods can take consolation in knowing his streak of seven straight victories on the PGA Tour is still alive, but he knows there's work ahead.

"That's one of the worst putting weeks I've had in a long time," said Woods, who shot a 3-under-par 69 to finish at 17-under 271. "I'm going to go home and just kind of figure it out. Hopefully get my putting organized before I compete again."

Stenson (68) began the day two shots behind Ernie Els (71) at Emirates Golf Club. But Stenson, a Swede who lives in Dubai, had five birdies to finish at 269. Els was a shot back, and Woods shared third with Niclas Fasth (68).

On a day when sand kept kicking up, Woods vied for the lead despite bogeying the first, 10th, and 11th holes. On the 11th, his chip dribbled into a sand trap. He tossed his club in frustration after another bogey.

"I was trying to hit a soft little chip-and-run and just muffed it right into the bunker," he said.

On the 13th, Woods barely missed a 30-foot eagle putt, and Woods fell to his knees in dismay. The American tapped in for a birdie, then greeted Federer.

On the 15th, Woods chipped in from 35 feet for birdie and appeared within striking distance. On the next hole, he hit his second shot from the fairway to within 5 feet, but he missed the birdie putt.

"It's frustrating because normally I don't really putt well on poor greens, like I did last week," Woods said, referring to the Buick Invitational. "And I come over here to the best greens we've seen in a long time and I miss a bunch."

Stenson has lived in Dubai for three years and is a member of Emirates Golf Club.

"It's just unbelievable to win in your home tournament," he said. "It's always nice to beat Tiger. And to play four rounds with Ernie and to beat him by one shot coming down the stretch, that's also satisfying."

PGA -- Aaron Baddeley birdied three of the final four holes and took advantage of Jeff Quinney's late collapse for a one-stroke victory in the FBR Open in Scottsdale, Ariz.

Baddeley trailed Quinney by three shots with four holes to go but birdied the 15th, 16th, and 17th holes en route to his second PGA Tour victory. The 26-year-old Australian won the Verizon Heritage last year.

"I'm sure Jeff is disappointed with the way he finished, but I was just trying to put pressure on him towards the end," Baddeley said. "When I got three back, I was really just thinking if I can be one back playing the last hole, I've got a chance."

Quinney, a PGA Tour rookie after five seasons on the Nationwide Tour, had led since late in the second round but bogeyed the final two holes, marking the third straight tournament he has led or shared the lead in the last round but failed to win.

His misery began when his tee shot splashed into the water at the 332-yard, par-4 17th. After his drop, his third shot landed just 4 feet from the cup, but he missed the short putt for a bogey.

Baddeley rolled in a 10-foot birdie putt on the 17th to go from one shot behind to one ahead.

Baddeley shot his second consecutive 7-under 64 to finish at 21-under 196. John Rollins tied the best round of the week at 63 and was second at 20 under, one shot ahead of Quinney (68). Bart Bryant was 18 under and Billy Mayfair followed at 17 under.

Women's Australian Open -- Karrie Webb captured her third title in Sydney, shooting an even-par 72 (10-under 278) in the final round for a six-stroke win over Wei Yun-jye (74).

"Hopefully, it's a good start to a good year," Webb said.

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