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Darren Clarke discovers equipment problem

European Ryder Cup stalwart Darren Clarke believes he has finally uncovered the reason for his poor form.

"I figured something out when I was in America recently. I've been putting the wrong shafts in my irons for three years," the 38-year-old Briton told reporters on the eve of the Scottish Open.

"I came home and changed them and straight away my iron play turned around. Hopefully that's going to stand me in good stead this week and next week (in the British Open at Carnoustie)."

Clarke, who made his first cut since February when he finished tied 49th at the Buick Open in Michigan earlier this month, said a couple of strokes with his new irons were enough to convince him he had made the right move.

"I had two shots when they had been reshafted and the difference was massive," said the Northern Irishman.

"My irons had been going right and left and too high. You would think I would be smart enough to figure it out myself after about three years but I wasn't quite clever enough."

Clarke, without a tournament victory since the 2005 Taiheiyo Masters in Japan, said he was now feeling much happier on and off the course.

"My game has been struggling, my boys have been struggling, but things have been turning around a little bit," said Clarke, a member of the Ryder Cup team in 1997, 1999, 2002, 2004 and 2006.

"It seems like things are starting to finally get back to normal again and consequently I feel happier about what I am doing."

Clarke, whose wife Heather died of cancer last year, said it had taken him a long time but that he had rediscovered his desire for golf.

"I am almost like a rookie again, I am so keen to play. For quite some time with my other issues that has not really been at the forefront of my mind but now I am mad keen to get playing."


July 12, 2007

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