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Elson and Otto have day to forget in Killarney

ROSS FISHER'S 61 was in a whole different world to what happened to Jamie Elson and Hennie Otto at the 3 Irish Open yesterday - they both had a 12 on one hole.

Elson's came on the 211-yard sixth, where he put four balls in the ditch short of the green, while at the long seventh South African Otto blasted four shots wildly right and was forced to dip back into his bag each time.

They finished with rounds of 84 and 83 respectively, Elson signing off with a triple bogey seven just to make matters worse.

It was a bad day too for former US Open champion Michael Campbell, who is now going to fly back to his Sydney home for more treatment to the shoulder trouble that has contributed to a shocking slump.

The New Zealander's 77 means he has made only one halfway cut in 20 events since last October - and that after missing 14 in a row not long before.


There was better luck for some of teh Irish as Pádraig Harrington finished on a high with a 20-foot successful birdie putt at the last.

The 2007 winner Harrington, without a Tour title for almost two years, said: "I putted like I did in my amateur days.

"It's a lot easier to play the game when you struggle a little bit and recover.

"You walk to the next tee feeling really good about yourself whereas the guy who hits two nice shots in and two-putts feels pretty bad."

Rory McIlroy, round in 68, has had 14 birdies already, but also seven bogeys.

"I'll have to really try and limit those for the weekend," said the 21-year-old world number eight.

"I feel as I'm playing well enough to challenge."

Darren Clarke's 70 put him six under, the same mark as his fellow Ryder Cup vice-captain Paul McGinley.

Meanwhile, a pep talk from golfing great Annika Sorenstam spurred Taiwan's Yani Tseng to grab a commanding four-shot lead in the second round of the women's British Open.

The 21-year-old Florida resident, who bought former world number one Sorenstam's house in Orlando, carded a second straight 68 before Royal Birkdale was deluged by rain.

"I asked her (Annika) how I could become the world number one and she taught me a lot," fifth-ranked Tseng said.

"She knows that I am a very aggressive player but she told me that I had to play smarter."

Tseng took on board the Swede's advice and sunk five birdies in the second round.

She pulled off a great escape at the par-five 15th, where she carved her first tee shot into the rough and hit an even wilder provisional.

But fortune was again on her side as she found the first ball and rescued a par.