Friday 20 April 2018

Clarke 'fed up' with mediocre putting game

karl macginty

THE best of times ... Darren Clarke looks forward this summer to moving back home to Portrush for good with his sons, Tyrone and Conor, while over the past two days he'd the rare pleasure of performing with his dad Godfrey on the European Tour stage.

The worst of times ... while Clarke has known tragedy in his personal life, never has Northern Ireland's Ryder Cup icon been more "fed up" with his golf game than now.

Yesterday's second-round one-under-par 72 on the Red Course, ushered Clarke comfortably through the cut on four-under in a tie for 40th with, among others, fellow Ulsterman Gareth Maybin.

Yet Clarke is being driven to despair by his inability to hole putts. "I'm not here to make up the numbers yet. Unfortunately, I'm doing that all too often these days," he admitted. "I'm fed up. Even when I hit good putts at the moment, they're not going in."

At least Clarke has this summer's homecoming to look forward to. Unhappy with his boys boarding at school in England, Clarke believes the time's right to make a move.

"London has been great for us but I've always loved Portrush and living by the ocean," he said.

Peter Lawrie was Ireland's best in Rabat after a 70 on the Red Course propelled him into a tie for eighth, four behind leader Rhys Davies (24), a Tour rookie from Wales.

Davies equalled the course-record 64 (eight-under) set earlier by Louis Oosthuizen on the Blue Course. The South African had nine birdies on his card, seven more than his playing companion Paul McGinley, who missed the cut along with Shane Lowry, Damien McGrane and Michael Hoey.

Hassan II Trophy,

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Irish Independent

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