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Mickelson to start 2013 PGA Tour season at La Quinta

Phil Mickelson of the U.S. tees off on the 12th hole during the first round of the Barclays Singapore Open golf tournament in Sentosa Novemb
Phil Mickelson of the U.S. tees off on the 12th hole during the first round of the Barclays Singapore Open golf tournament in Sentosa Novemb

(Reuters) - Four-times major champion Phil Mickelson will launch his 2013 PGA Tour campaign at next month's Humana Challenge in La Quinta, California, tournament organizers said on Wednesday.

The American left-hander is the leading all-time money winner at the 72-hole pro-am celebrity event, previously known as the Bob Hope Classic, and won the title in 2002 and 2004.

"We're excited about it," Humana Challenge executive director Bob Marra said during a news conference at La Quinta. "He's a two-time winner here ... and he's Phil Mickelson.

"The legacy Phil has left on our event is undeniable, his popularity among our fans is remarkable. We could not be more pleased to have him start his season with us again."

Murra said that American world number nine Brandt Snedeker, the 2012 FedExCup champion, had also confirmed he would play in the January 17-20 event in the California desert.

American Mark Wilson will be back to defend his Humana Challenge title, having triumphed by two shots at La Quinta in January.

(Reporting by Mark Lamport-Stokes in Los Angeles; Editing by Frank Pingue)

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