Donald back on golf course after No. 1 near miss

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NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana, April 28 – England's Luke Donald, who missed becoming World No.1 by losing a playoff last weekend, looks again for that elusive title starting Thursday at the $6.4 million US PGA Zurich Classic.

Donald missed his chance to claim the top spot when American Brandt Snedeker beat him on the third hole of a sudden-death playoff Sunday to win the Heritage tournament, allowing Englishman Lee Westwood to reclaim the top ranking spot.

While Westwood plays in Seoul this week, Donald returns to action in New Orleans for the first time, trying to put his near miss behind him.

"Last week was disappointing not to get the win, but you move on," Donald said. "You take the good that came from it. There were a lot of positives from last week and looking forward to another crack at trying to pick up a trophy."

Donald said he likes how the TPC of Louisiana course sets up for him as he tries to put aside talk of what it might take to move past Westwood and German Martin Kaymer to become the 15th man to own golf’s top ranking.

"It’s hard," Donald said. "There was a lot of talk about it last week. I think the goal for me is continually going through the steps to try to become a better player. When you do that, good things happen like they have this year.

"I’ve really had a solid start to the year, been doing a lot of things right and I’ve been putting in a lot of hard work. No. 1 is just another part of that parcel and I’ll continue to do what I’m doing and hopefully that will happen."

Donald is happy to be back on a golf course working on his game after such a narrow defeat rather than having time off to dwell upon the disappointment.

"I’ve already forgotten about it," Donald said. "I’m taking the positives from last week, but I tried to not dwell on things so much. Just learn from it and move on.

"A lot of things did go right last week. I’m playing well. I’m swinging well. I’m doing a lot of things well. So I think it’s good to keep playing.

"Sometimes you go back for a week and take a few days off and you can kind of lose that feeling you have in your swing. I’m glad to be playing this week. I think it’s nice to continue where I left off from last week."

Donald has adjusted to such Louisiana items as an alligator near the 17th tee and food stations around for a pro-am event and he might attend an NBA playoff game Thursday night between the New Orleans Hornets and defending NBA champion Los Angeles Lakers.

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