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A winner at Kapalua, Dustin Johnson withdraws from Sony Open because of the flu

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Dustin Johnson follows his shot off the first fairway during the first round of the Sony Open golf tournament on Thursday, Jan. 10, 2013, in Honolulu. (AP Photo/Marco Garcia) (The Associated Press)

Dustin Johnson withdrew Friday after nine holes at the Sony Open because of the flu.

Johnson was coming off a four-shot win last week in the Tournament of Champions at Kapalua, which started Monday and raced to a 54-hole finish a day later because of high wind.

He opened with a 70 at Waialae and was 3 over on the front nine — at least four shots away from making the cut — when he informed tournament officials that he was too ill to continue.

Johnson had a chance this week to join Ernie Els as the only players to sweep the two Hawaii tournaments at the start of the year. Els won both in 2003.