Love playing for Payne

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The Independent Online

With the tragic death of his close friend still on his mind, Love overpowered Kauai's Poipu Bay Resort course in Hawaii on Tuesday to breeze past Masters champion Jose Maria Olazabal, 6 and 5 in the PGA Grand Slam of Golf.

With the tragic death of his close friend still on his mind, Love overpowered Kauai's Poipu Bay Resort course in Hawaii on Tuesday to breeze past Masters champion Jose Maria Olazabal, 6 and 5 in the PGA Grand Slam of Golf.

As the first alternate based on his performances in this year's majors, Love initially declined to fill Stewart's slot in the 36-hole match-play tournament, limited to winners of the four majors.

But, after some thought, Love relented.

"He was right here with me," Love said. "We just can't keep him out of our heads. It was one of the reasons I decided to come. It was an important for golf and for me in terms of moving on."

Woods pulled away on the back nine to beat British Open champion Paul Lawrie 3 and 2.

Love didn't waste any time taking a big lead over Olazabal.

"The turning point was the second hole," Love said. "I was on the brink of disaster, but I got it in and was able to snatch it away from him."

On the 524-yard (477-meter) second hole, it was Olazabal who appeared to have the upper hand, landing his second shot within 8 feet.

Love, meanwhile, was looking at a tough 15-foot (5-meter) recovery from the frontside bunker.

But Love chipped it in, and the run was on. He birdied the next four holes and added another at the eighth, making the turn at 7-under-par 29.

He added birdies on the 10th and 12th before closing out the match on the 13th.

"I played a guy who was hot," Olazabal said. "He played perfect golf."

Woods, meanwhile, and Lawrie were even through 11 holes. Woods, who arrived only a couple of hours before the start of the match from the World Cup in Malaysia and a stopover in Japan, birdied four of the next five holes to end the match.

"It was a very intense match," Woods said. "I wasn't 100 percent. I just got in from Japan and I didn't get much sleep."

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