John Daly had a rocky final round today. He posted a 7-over-par 11 at the eighth hole that included a two-shot penalty for hitting his ball while it was still moving. When he had completed his round of 83, he said he may not play at next year's U.S. Open at Pebble Beach, where he missed the cut in '92, shooting 74-75.
Daly's drive on the 485-yard par-4 No. 8 was in the fairway, but his second shot went over the green. His putt up the slope rolled back almost to his feet, so he tried again. The second time it failed to make the slope and came back down the hill, and Daly gave his ball what the U.S. Golf Association described as a "hard putt while ball still rolling back."
That polo shot was counted as his fifth and it skittered across the green and off the front. He then chipped to 20 feet of the hole on his sixth shot, putted 10 feet past it, missed that putt and tapped in, with the penalty assessed for "hitting ball in motion."
Daly declined a USGA request to meet with reporters afterward, though he did speak briefly on camera with NBC's Roger Maltbie.
"I told myself I'm not going to let that ball roll down there again," Daly said of his swipe at the moving ball. "It's frustrating. I lost my patience. I just took the two shots and tried not to look stupid."
His playing partner, Tom Kite, said Daly apologized to him. "When he slapped it out on the fairway, he said, `Sorry about that, Tom,' " Kite said. "What else could you say?"
Daly finished the tournament at 29-over-par 309. He was just a shot off the lead after shooting a 68 in the first round, but followed that with rounds of 77, 81 and 83. Today, he was also critical of the USGA's third-round set-up.
"The pin placements were very unfair," he said. "I don't know if I'll be playing Pebble Beach next year. I don't know if it's worth my time. I'm not going to Pebble Beach and watch the USGA ruin that course, too."
Scottish Flavor in Carolina
They held the U.S. Open at Pinehurst this year, and St. Andrews showed up.
Though heavy rain at the start of the week and a Scotland-like all-day mist and drizzle dampened the proceedings, USGA officials have been delighted with this venerable venue. They're saying there's no doubt the Open will return some time in the first decade of the 21st century.
"It's almost a foregone conclusion in the minds of so many people," said David Fay, executive director of the USGA, told the Charlotte Observer. "It's no stretch to say, in terms of everything we've seen this week, including the most important thing -- inside the ropes -- it's been an unqualified success."
The USGA has determined Open sites through 2003, going to Pebble Beach next year, followed by Southern Hills in Tulsa in 2001, Bethpage on Long Island in 2002 and Olympia Fields in Chicago in 2003. Though it hasn't officially been announced, the 2004 Open is expected to go back to Shinnecock Hills, also on Long Island.
PGA Tour officials also have been looking at Pinehurst No. 2 as a future venue for the Presidents Cup in 2004.
H. Kuehne Makes It Two
Hank Kuehne, the current U.S. Amateur champion and older brother of Women's Open third place finisher Kelli, turns pro on Monday after ending his play-for-no-pay career with good news and bad news. The bad -- he shot 78 today, 26-over-par 306. The good -- he was the only amateur among six in the field to make the cut, giving him the low-amateur medal.
"Oh well, that's the way it goes," Kuehne said. "At least I got to play it four times. I had a good week. I beat a few people, and close to 100 didn't make the cut. My short game was below average, to say the least."
The new Tiger Woods commercial for that sneaker company he represents shows him bouncing a ball off a club face for close to 30 seconds. It's no easy trick, especially when he puts the club behind his back and through his legs and the ball keeps bouncing. He finishes by taking a fungo baseball swing and knocking his ball a far piece.
Woods said he needed only four takes to get the trick right.
CAPTION: John Daly, right, gets a ruling from USGA official Ben Nelson on No. 8. He was penalized two strokes, shot 11 on hole.