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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Friday, January 29, 2010

Piercy's 64 leads in Farmers Insurance


Advertiser News Services

Scott Piercy had the best score yesterday at Torrey Pines because he made nine birdies. Robert Allenby might have had the best round because he made no bogeys.

The Farmers Insurance Open in San Diego is played on two courses that couldn't be more different the North Course is 712 yards shorter than the South Course, which hosted a U.S. Open two years ago.

Piercy played the North and shot 8-under 64 with seven birdies on the front nine and even entertained thoughts of a 59 until a bogey on his 11th hole.

"I shoot 59 every day," Piercy said. "I just have to keep on going, usually."

He had a one-shot lead over Ben Crane, Chris Tidland, Ryuji Imada and Matt Every. They all played the North Course, and will have to tackle the big South today.

Allenby had a bogey-free 67 on a course built for the U.S. Open, making him the only player among the top 15 in the tournament to play the South Course yesterday.

Phil Mickelson made his 2010 debut on the South and played conservatively on his way to a 70.

TENNIS

MURRAY GAINS FINAL AT AUSTRALIAN OPEN

Andy Murray rallied past Marin Cilic last night to reach the Australian Open final and is again only a win away from ending a long British drought at the Grand Slam tournaments.

Murray started slowly but picked up momentum in a 3-6, 6-4, 6-4, 6-2 win over the 21-year-old Croatian.

"It was really important because I don't want to say the match was slipping away from me, but the momentum was definitely with him," Murray said.

Now, with only top-ranked Roger Federer or Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (played earlier today) ahead, he is one win from breaking a drought for British men at the four majors that dates to Fred Perry in 1936.

Venus and Serena Williams won their fourth Australian Open women's doubles title today, beating Cara Black and Liezel Huber, 6-4, 6-3.

SAILING

ALINGHI WILL FORFEIT IF SAILS NOT ALLOWED

Defending America's Cup champion Alinghi of Switzerland says it will forfeit the silver trophy if American challenger BMW Oracle Racing succeeds in getting a New York court to disqualify its sails.

The statement by Fred Meyer, vice commodore of Alinghi's backing yacht club, Societe Nautique de Geneve, comes as the bitter rivals prepare for a rare best-of-three showdown scheduled to begin Feb. 8 in giant multihulls.

BMW Oracle Racing has gone to the New York State Supreme Court again, arguing that the sails on Alinghi's catamaran breach America's Cup rules because they were not made in the team's home country.

The Swiss say the sails were constructed in Switzerland using blanks built at North Sails' plant in Minden, Nev.

ELSEWHERE

Patrick might start in Daytona: IndyCar star Danica Patrick will compete in at least 12 NASCAR races this season and could make her debut in the season opener, JR Motorsports announced yesterday. Her first race, though, is still uncertain. Patrick is waiting to decide whether to race in the Nationwide Series opener at Daytona International Speedway on Feb. 13.

Chinese duo triumphs: Chinese pairs skaters Zhang Dan and Zhang Hao, ranked No. 2 in the world, captured the gold at the Four Continents championship at Jeonju, South Korea, in their last outing before the Feb. 12 Olympics in Vancouver. Americans Keauna McLaughlin and Rockne Brubaker finished second.