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Daly plea turned down

International Sports

John Daly:BBCJohn Daly:BBCJOHN Daly's request to be allowed to use a buggy in the Open Championship at Royal Portrush later this month has been turned down by the R&A.

The 1995 Open winner, 53, was permitted to use a buggy at the recent US PGA Championship because of a knee problem.

However, the R&A said on Saturday it had declined Daly's plea despite having "full sympathy" for him.

Daly said he was "disappointed" by the decision but added that he still hopes to play in Northern Ireland.

The two-time major winner regularly uses a buggy on the over-50s Champions Tour, where he now plays most of his golf, because of degenerative arthritis in his right knee.

After the R&A ruling, Daly said on Twitter: "Quite disappointed they do not see it the same way our PGA of American and PGA Tour sees it. Different continents different laws???

"As a proud Open champion, I know what the Open Championship represents and what a special tournament it is.

"All who have earned the right to compete should be afforded that right to compete and give it their best shot.

"While I trust the R&A's decision was made with good intentions, I could not disagree more with their conclusions."

Daly added that he still intended to "give it a shot in two weeks at Portrush".

The R&A's statement said it had "carefully considered" Daly's request.

"We appreciate the difficulty John is facing and have full sympathy for him as this is clearly a serious, long-term condition," it said.

"Having considered all of the relevant factors, the Championship Committee has decided to decline his request.

"We believe that walking the course is an integral part of the Championship and is central to the tradition of links golf which is synonymous with The Open."

The R&A statement added that Royal Portrush's terrain is "not suited to buggies and indeed the club does not permit their use".

"This is not a decision we have taken lightly but we believe it is the right one for The Open.," it added.

"John has a special place in our hearts as a champion golfer and he will always be welcome at the Championship both at Royal Portrush and in future."

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