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Duval discovers that shooting 91 at The Open isn’t a lot of fun

David Duval

(Photo by Stuart Franklin/Getty Images)

Good news, duffers. David Duval is just like rest of us. He can shoot 91 at The Open, too. That’s 20-over par, if you’re keeping score at home.

In one of the most embarrassing performances on the PGA Tour in a very long time, Duval, once golf’s No. 1-ranked player, opened play Thursday in Portrush, Northern Island by stinking out the joint.

Guess who won’t make the cut?

How does one shoot 91? Well, you begin by shooting a triple bogey and quadruple bogie. He was also penalized two strokes for playing the wrong ball and another two penalties for a lost ball.

“I just done something I’ve never done as a professional … ” said Duval, who twice had shot 85. “It was a long day, a rough day. A very unique, awful situation.”

It even got rougher after he stepped off the course. He shot 13 on the seventh hole, but was billed for another shot after a rules review.

Duval is no hack. He’s won 13 PGA championships. But he hasn’t won since 2001 when he won The Open at Royal Lytham.

As you might have guessed, golf really isn’t Duval’s thing anymore. His appearances on the Tour are occasional now. He’d played only four times this season – missed three cuts and one withdrawal. But since he won The Open he’s entitled to play the event until he is 60, which means he can try for another 12 years.

He started the round with birdies on the first two holes and pars on 3 and 4 and was 2-under. But he wiped that out with an 8 of the fifth.

On the par-5 seventh, he hit two crappy tee shots that caused him to hit provisional shots. When the first balls were not found, he was already sitting at 5 for the hole. Then he struck a ball that didn’t belong to him. Not only did that incur a two-stroke penalty, but he forced him to return to the tee and start again.

“I get up to the front of the green I discover it was the wrong No. 2 Titleist,” he said. “I am at fault, I didn’t check it myself close enough. It happened to me once before — a marshal is standing right next to the ball. … it’s just my mistake.”

Duval is now one of five players to make a 12 or worse at The Open in the last two decades. He shot 49 for the first nine and 42 on the back. The last time a player had three triple bogies or more in the same round at The Open? Duval in the first round of the 2003 event when he shot 83 at Royal St. George’s.

“It’s fairly unsettling, obviously,” he said. “I came in here with some fairly high hopes. “As a professional, if you play, you post your score. Is there some hint of embarrassment to it? I don’t know but I teed off and what I shot at the end of the day put it on the board.”