Doha: John Daly overcame windy and dusty conditions to shoot a 5-under 67 on Thursday and take the clubhouse lead at the Qatar Masters, one shot ahead of K.J. Choi and two better than 1999 British Open champion Paul Lawrie.
The two-time major winner had five birdies in a bogey-free round despite wind gusts that reached about 35 kph (22 mph) and whipped up the desert sand that surrounds the course. Daly, who quit the Australian Open in November after hitting seven balls in the water, has not won in eight years.
"It was brutal. I'm pretty shocked myself shooting 5-under," said Daly.