- The Washington Times - Monday, November 24, 2008

From combined dispatches

HONG KONG | John Daly shot a bogey-free 8-under 62 on Sunday in the final round of the Hong Kong Open, a round the struggling two-time major winner ranked among the best he has had in three years.

After opening with consecutive 68s, the 42-year-old Daly had a 73 on Saturday to drop out of title contention. He had eight birdies Sunday to finish a stroke off the course record on the tight Hong Kong Golf Club course.

“It feels really, really good. It feels like, ‘Yeah, maybe I still can play a little bit,’” Daly said. “I wasn’t expecting this much this week and to shoot one of probably my best rounds in three years, I’m pretty happy with it.”

Daly, the 1991 PGA Championship and 1995 British Open winner, has not had a PGA Tour card since 2006 when his two-year exemption expired from his last victory at the Buick Invitational in 2004. He made only five cuts in 17 starts on the PGA Tour this year and earned a little more than $56,000. His world ranking has fallen to 788.

The American has also had a tumultuous year off the course, going through a divorce and spending a night in jail on Oct. 27 after being found “extremely intoxicated and uncooperative,” police said, outside a Hooters restaurant in North Carolina.

Daly said he was surprised by the strong turnout for his early morning round Sunday in the event sanctioned by the European and Asian tours. He drew a large crowd at the 18th and dozens of fans were waiting for autographs after he finished.

The American will now head to Australia for the Australian Masters at Huntingdale next week and the Australian PGA at Coolum the next.

“I can’t remember the last time I had three weeks in a row that I could play,” Daly said. “That’s probably why I’m hoping to get a lot of invites in the European tour and play four, five, six in a row. That’s the only way I can play good golf.”

Taiwan’s Lin Wen-tang won the tournament in a playoff over Northern Ireland’s Rory McIlroy.

Shin tops Creamer, Webb

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. | Ji-Yai Shin began this year thinking she would end up playing in the LPGA Tour’s qualifying school.

A major title and a $1 million check changed that.

Shin, this summer’s British Open champion, held off Karrie Webb and an ailing Paula Creamer to win the ADT Championship with a final round 2-under par 70 at Trump International. She captured the $1 million winner’s prize, by far the biggest on tour, after a four-birdie, two-bogey day.

Webb finished one shot back, and Creamer, who spent Saturday night in the hospital because of an inflamed abdominal wall, finished tied for third with Seon Hwa Lee after both shot 74s.

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