Choi, back from trip to South Korea, congratulates Toms for rebound win

kj choi, david toms
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David Toms congratulated K.J. Choi at the Players Championship, and Choi returned the gesture on Tuesday in Dallas.
By
Associated Press

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Published: Wednesday, May 25, 2011 | 12:42 a.m.

K.J. Choi is happy for the way David Toms rebounded from losing their playoff at the Players Championship to winning at Colonial a week later.

“I first want to congratulate David for his performance last week after what he went through,” Choi said Tuesday after a practice round at the HP Byron Nelson Championship. “I’m not surprised at all that David pulled it off.”

Choi became the Players champion when Toms missed a short par putt on the extra hole at TPC Sawgrass a week ago Sunday. Choi didn’t play at Hogan’s Alley last week, where Toms opened with consecutive rounds of 62s. Toms blew a seven-stroke lead in the third round, but came back for his 13th career win that was his first since January 2006.

The 44-year-old Toms is taking a planned two-week break after playing four consecutive tournaments and isn’t playing the Nelson.

“It was that one shot, that one putt that David missed,” Choi said. “I don’t think he won last week by chance. I mean it was definitely due.”

Choi, who now lives in the Dallas area, returned Monday from South Korea, after the 41-year-old South Korean announced plans there for the K.J. Choi Invitational tournament in October.

The tournament is something he has wanted to do since first being invited by Jack Nicklaus to play at Memorial in 1999. He remembers how impressed he was with how Memorial was set up and also how local citizens and volunteers were part of the charitable event.

“Ever since then I thought to myself that if I ever had the opportunity to have a tournament on my own, this is what I want to emulate,” he said. “And I want to give back to the community by holding the tournament. I just want it to be a special event for the people.”