Woods trails by 3 while Daly withdraws

John Daly left Australian Open organizers

John Daly left Australian Open organizers "bitter and disappointed" after walking off the course in the middle of his opening round on Thursday, Nov. 10, 2011. (REUTERS/Daniel Munoz/Files)

SPORTS NETWORK

, Last Updated: 12:13 PM ET

SYDNEY - Tiger Woods carded a bogey-free, four-under 68 Thursday and is tied for eighth place after the opening round of the Australian Open.

Woods, who is playing for the first time since the Frys.com Open and just the second time since the PGA Championship, had four birdies in a six-hole span at The Lakes Golf Club.

After seven straight pars to start his round, Woods knocked in a three-foot birdie putt on the par-five eighth. He followed a birdie on No. 10 with an up-and-down birdie on the par-five 11th.

Woods drove into a greenside bunker on the par-four 13th. He blasted to a foot from the cup and kicked that in for birdie. Woods, who had three birdie tries lip out in the first five holes, parred the final five holes to end at minus-four.

Australia's Jarrod Lyle fired a seven-under 65 to grab a one-stroke lead over American Presidents Cup players Nick Watney and Dustin Johnson.

U.S. Presidents Cup captain Fred Couples posted a five-under 67 and he shared fourth place with Australians Steve Jones, Greg Chalmers and James Nitties.

Among those tied with Woods in eighth place is his Presidents Cup teammate, Bubba Watson.

Adam Scott had an up-and-down round with four birdies, four bogeys and a double-eagle on the par-five eighth. Scott and Presidents Cup teammate Jason Day are tied for 14th at minus-three with 10 other players, including John Cook, one of the assistant captains for the American Presidents Cup team.

Greg Norman, who will captain the International team at the Presidents Cup, had three birdies and a two bogeys in a round of 71.

John Daly withdrew from the tournament when he walked off the course on the 11th hole. After hitting the wrong ball in a bunker on No. 10, Daly dropped to plus-seven after a two-stroke penalty was assessed.

Daly then hit as many as seven balls into the water on the 11th hole. He walked off the course after shaking his playing partners' hands and signing his scorecard with a rules official.

However, tournament director Trevor Herden was livid.

"It's very disappointing, obviously, for the tournament and certainly unprofessional and I'm extremely bitter and disappointed that he's treated this championship this way," stated Herden. "It's becoming a bit of a habit, something similar happened last week or the week before, but it's unacceptable and I certainly hope that all the tours deal with it in the appropriate manner this time.

"We are definitely disappointed in that attitude and that behaviour. It's unprofessional. We've got the best field ever and he wants to treat it like this, it's just not good enough. I would say this will be the last time we see John Daly."

Brian Thorburn, the PGA of Australia CEO, later said that Daly's invitation to play in the Australian PGA Championship had been revoked. That event is in two weeks.


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