Ballesteros Disqualified From Open
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CORK, Ireland (AP) _ Seve Ballesteros was disqualified from the Irish Open on Thursday after taking 12 shots at the par-5 18th hole and signing for an incorrect score.
American Fred Funk shot a 5-under-par 66 and shared the first-round lead with Nick Dougherty of England, Joakim Haeggman of Sweden, Eduardo Romero of Argentina and Peter O’Malley of Australia.
The 45-year-old Ballesteros, returning after an eight-week break, signed for a 10 on No. 18 and a total of 87.
After realizing his mistake, Ballesteros notified chief referee John Paramor and was disqualified.
Ballesteros, who also had a nine at No. 10, drove into light rough at the 507-yard 18th. He hit his second shot into the greenside pond.
Ballesteros’ first chip from the drop area went into the water, then his second and third attempts hit the bank and rolled back into the water.
His fourth attempt, his 10th shot, landed on the green and he two-putted.
Funk played with Ballesteros for the first time.
``He’s been such a great player in the past and, yes, it is very sad,″ Funk said. ``He still has great imagination around the green but it is sad. I hate to see it.″
Romero had three eagle 3s in his round, while Dougherty birdied five consecutive holes to start his back nine.
Defending champion Colin Montgomerie shot a 4-under 67 and was in a five-way tie for sixth place along with Lee Westwood on the Fota Island course on Ireland’s south coast.