ABU DHABI (Reuters) - Dubai World Championship winner Lee Westwood said his clubs “felt like fishing rods” after missing the cut at the Abu Dhabi Championship on Friday.
The British world number four slumped to a second round 78, putting him three-over and ensuring an early end to his tournament.
Australia’s Rick Kulacz, on 12-under, holds a one-stroke lead.
Westwood, who achieved a European Tour double in November by winning the season-ending Dubai World Championship and the overall money-list title, was left wondering if his equipment supplier, Ping, had fitted all his clubs with wrong shafts.
“They just don’t feel right and they don’t feel the same, and I don’t know if they’ve put the wrong shafts in or whatever,” the Englishman told reporters.
“So I will probably get a new set sent out and reshaft the lot over the weekend to see if that does any good. They just feel like fishing rods.”
A long-distance phone call to his Melbourne-based coach helped Kulacz to the top of the leaderboard.
Kulacz, 24, birdied eight of his closing 10 holes for a sizzling nine-under 63.
The Perth-born Kulacz is competing for the first time as a European Tour member after securing his playing card at last November’s Qualifying School in Spain.
Kulacz, a dual winner on the Asian Tour, contacted his coach Marty Joyce after an indifferent three days of practice.
“It was the worst I was hitting the ball in months but after phoning Marty in Melbourne we managed to sort out a few things in my swing,” said Kulacz.
“It was just nice to be able then to put what we discussed into practice and see the rewards, as I got that feeling back in my game while a pretty hot putter also helped today.”
Kulacz was in the second last group of the day and edged ahead of Spain’s Sergio Garcia (67), Sweden’s Peter Hanson (67) and Ireland’s Shane Lowry (65) who are in second place on 11-under.
Editing by Justin Palmer