Clarke shoots 68, upstages McIlroy at British Open
Thursday, July 14, 2011
SANDWICH, England (AP) -- Once the face of golf in Northern Ireland, Darren Clarke has become the forgotten man.
First it was Graeme McDowell winning the U.S. Open at Pebble Beach last year. Then it was Rory McIlroy capturing the same major at Congressional last month.
At the British Open on Thursday, it was Clarke's chance to shine.
Boosted by regular practice back home on the Royal Portrush links course, the 42-year-old Ulsterman shot a patient 2-under 68 to leave himself tied for fifth on the opening day at Royal St. George's.
Clarke says "I enjoy any time I get back on links. I feel very comfortable."
Clarke also credited a catch-up with renowned sports psychologist Bob Rotella on Wednesday as another reason for his improved play.