Downhill Daly plays for pride

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The Independent Online
JOHN DALY, the Open champion, went from bad to worse yesterday with a third-round 84 in the Johnnie Walker World Championship in Jamaica. Daly, who started the pounds 1.6m event with two rounds of 80, had a nine, a seven and three sixes on his card to slump to 31 over par.

While most people dream of spending time on the Caribbean island, for Daly the visit has become a nightmare. On his one previous visit to the championship four years ago he shot 77-87 and was then disqualified for signing for a wrong score.

"I can honestly say I didn't try in 1991, but I've been trying here and I can't apologise for that," he said. On the eighth green, however, he did not even mark his ball and three-putted from three feet.

"I just had no energy today. I've been feeling fine this week, but climbing up to the fourth green and fifth tee drained me. It's brutal. I was worried about breaking 90 at one point and it would have been good to pack it in."

Out in 42 was bad enough, but Daly then twice went out of bounds off the 10th tee for a quintuple-bogey nine and took seven on the 377-yard 12th after pulling a two-iron tee shot up against the practice range fence.

Daly, playing with a marker because the Swede Anders Forsbrand (19 over for his first two rounds) withdrew with the early signs of pneumonia, added: "I'll just come out tomorrow and see if I can break 80."

Forsbrand was taken to hospital on Friday night with a temperature of 103 degrees. After chest X-rays he was put on a course of antibiotics and eventually allowed to return to his hotel in the early hours of the morning.

The German Masters champion will still receive pounds 37,174 for 20th and last place, however, while Daly, whatever he scores in the final round, will be richer by pounds 37,826.

In the chase for the massive first prize of pounds 358,000, American Fred Couples led Fiji's Vijay Singh by one shot after a level par 71 and was two shots ahead of his Ryder Cup team-mate, Loren Roberts, who was on 208.

Couples went ahead when Singh bogeyed the short fourth, while Wayne Riley, part of a three-way tie at halfway, shot a 76 to end up five shots off the pace.

Sam Torrance had a 67 to improve to six over par along with Colin Montgomerie while Nick Faldo is two shots back after a round of 72. Montgomerie, the European No 1, could be fined - again - for swearing out loud earlier in the event.

The 32-year-old Scot's outburst came at the end of his second round and tournament director John Paramor said: "I was not there at the time, but a member of my staff was and I have been made aware of the incident.'' Montgomerie was fined pounds 1,000 two years ago after calling the Moroccan Open "a bit of an amateur sham."

Ken Schofield, the European tour executive director, said then: "We've lost patience - we want to hear about his golf, not his petulance."

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