John Daly walks off course at Australian Open

Sydney: Controversial American John Daly stormed out of the Australian Open midway through Thursday`s opening round, in a move described by tournament officials as unacceptable and unprofessional.

Daly, who has a history of blow-ups in tournaments, shook hands with his playing partners Craig Parry and Hunter Mahan and left the course on the 11th hole following a triple bogey seven at the previous hole.

Championship director Trevor Herden said Daly had incurred a two-shot penalty for hitting the wrong ball in a bunker on the 10th hole and then put "five or six balls" in the water on the 11th hole.

"He`s walked straight off the golf course with his son beside him, got in a courtesy car and gone straight back to the hotel," Herden said.

"It`s very disappointing for the tournament, certainly unprofessional and I am extremely bitter and disappointed that he has treated this championship this way."

Daly, 45, a two-time major winner, has a history of pulling out during tournaments and Herden urged the world`s golf tours to "deal with him in a serious fashion".

Bureau Report

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