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Daly to Have Season-Ending Elbow Surgery


John Daly has withdrawn from the British Open in two weeks because he will have surgery on his right elbow this week. The two-time major champion will be replaced at Muirfield by Scotland's Stephen Gallacher.

Daly said he originally tore a tendon in his elbow at the Byron Nelson Championship in May. Doctors said then that he could try to play as long as he didn't hit a tree root or a rock. Unfortunately, that's what happened in the second round of the Greenbrier Classic last Friday.

"I was just trying to chip out and there was a root under the ball," Daly said in reference to his fateful shot on the 12th hole (his third of the day) at Greenbrier Resort's Old TPC White course in White Sulphur Springs, W.Va. "It wasn't more than a 50-yard chip shot. But that's the pain I've been dealing with."

The 47-year-old, a two-time major champion, will go under the knife Thursday and miss one of the two majors for which he's eligible; the other one is the PGA Championship, which he won in 1991. Daly's British Open victory came in 1995 at St. Andrews, when he beat Italy's Costantino Rocca in a playoff.

Daly said he could begin rehabbing the elbow in September, and possibly return to competition later in the year.

The news was upsetting for the Arkansas native because of the site of this year's Open Championship. "I hate missing the British Open, especially at Muirfield. It's one of the best (courses) on the planet."

He also said he was getting in a bit of a groove this season before re-aggravating the injury at the Greenbrier. "What really sucks about this is that I was getting ready to play seven in a row, and that's when I played my best golf last year."