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Notebook: Hurst skips better meal

| Tuesday, July 4, 2006

• Pat Hurst left the Newport Country Club on Sunday night tied for the lead of the U.S. Women's Open and unable to get into one of the city's fancier restaurants. Dropping her name might have helped get a table, "but I wasn't going to," she said. "I ended up at McDonald's."

• The blonde hair, the accent and the uniform she wears at us-against-them golf tournaments like the Solheim Cup say that Annika Sorenstam is Swedish. But the three-time U.S. Women's Open winner is an American now, having been sworn in as a citizen last month in Orlando, Fla. She's just waiting for her U.S. passport to arrive. "I think it's pretty funny how things happen and the sequence they come in," she said. "I don't know if you can count this as my (national championship). But I'm a U.S. citizen, and this is the championship of the USA."

• Hurst fell behind by five strokes on the front nine of the U.S. Women's Open playoff, and when she got to the 17th green still trailing by five, she knew it was over. So, after teeing off on No. 18, it seemed like her chance to ask Sorenstam for a favor. "I said, 'If anything, I just want a signed ball from you,' " Hurst said. "Just like everybody else, they want a signed ball. So do I. She's a Hall of Famer. We don't have too many Hall of Famers on our tour, and she's great. She's a class act in women's golf, and she's very good for us."

• There were 4,655 people watching yesterday's playoff round, compared to more than 20,000 on Sunday. Although the grandstands were full -- at least for the last few holes -- the luxury boxes lining the 18th were mostly deserted. "When we came out, there was hardly anybody here," Sorenstam said. "I mean, this is a championship you want to win, and you feel like it's just me and Pat, and we're going to play a casual round of golf."

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