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LEADING OFF

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Photograph by Erick W. Rasco

GREEN DAY Rory McIlroy left no doubt that the new crown jewel of golf hails from the Emerald Isle; with a rousing, record-low 16-under finish at last weekend's U.S. Open in Bethesda, Md., the 22-year-old prodigy from Holywood, Northern Ireland became the youngest golfer to win the tournament since Bobby Jones in 1923 (page 32, POINT AFTER).

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Photograph by Simon Bruty

GAEL FORCE WIN Mon dieu, Monfils! France's Gael Monfils got off to a smashing start to kick off the Wimbledon fortnight, defeating Germany's Matthias Bachinger 6--4, 7--6, 6--3 in Monday's opening round.

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Photograph by Peter Read Miller

STROKED, DUDE Michael Phelps created his usual share of ripples at last weekend's Santa Clara International Grand Prix by winning the 200-meter backstroke on Saturday; the previous day the 14-time Olympic gold medalist took first in the 100-meter butterfly and second in the 100-meter freestyle.