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Sponsors deny Woods Arizona return

One of the sponsors who dropped Tiger Woods is not going to have the world number one playing in their tournament next week.

Just like Phil Mickelson, Woods will be missing from the 64-man line-up for the WGC-Accenture World Match Play Championship, which starts in Tucson, Arizona, on Wednesday.

There had been speculation that Woods might end his indefinite break at the same event in which he came back to action last February following eight months out after knee surgery. But that always seemed unlikely, with Accenture having decided before Christmas that the 34-year-old was not the right man for them after all the sex allegations last year.

So the next possibilities of a Woods reappearance could be either the WGC-CA Championship in Miami on March 11-14 or the Arnold Palmer Invitational in Orlando two weeks later.

An alternative, though, is the unofficial -- and private -- Tavistock Cup match on his home course, Isleworth, in Florida on March 22-23.

Not that there is any certainty Woods intends to play any time soon.

Mickelson is to spend time with his family after both his wife and mother were diagnosed with breast cancer last year.

Meanwhile, defending champion and first round leader Dustin Johnson was joined by five others atop the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am at the tournament's halfway point.

Paul Goydos carded the day's low round, a seven-under-par 65, to join Johnson on 10 under overall, while JB Holmes, Alex Cejka, Bryce Molder and Matt Jones were alongside the duo after 36 holes.