Ryan Fox fought due to illness in the last tournament in Dubai. Photo / Getty
Ryan Fox was delighted to still be aiming for a top-20 finish at the Dubai Desert Classic on Tuesday after battling through illness in the last round.
Kiwi world no 30 after five shots
winner Rory McIlroy after a strong day three, but a stomach bug left no hope of a shortened round as he faded to a tie for 20th.
Fox said he was “really struggling” through the final round and was happy to finish the tournament at all.
“Don’t eat anything. Just drinking water,” said the fool to Herald. “Without going into too much detail, I can say thank you, there are quite a lot of toilets on the golf course. It was even worse. I’m not quite sure how to get around sometimes.
“I spent a lot of time lying down, I pulled a lot of time and it was really struggling. And to be honest, it was probably a better day than I ever wished for.
“Literally my goal for the day was just to actually finish and that was looking pretty dicey at times. So to still get in the top 20 next week and not do much damage in that last round, considering how I felt, was really pretty good.
Fox admits he is still not quite 100 per cent ahead of the Ras Al Khaimah Championship in Abu Dhabi, which kicks off later today, but says he will go.
“It’s getting better. I don’t think I’m 100 percent yet, but at least I’ve had dinner in the last couple of days and I’ve been able to do it on the prow. [yesterday] in a sense he had peace.
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“Stomach bugs are not fun at the best of times, let alone trying to walk 10k and play a course. My body has been beaten and I’m sure I still have two days to get back to 100 percent, but I’m definitely ready to go.
“I had to manage my energy levels a little better this week than maybe I would have in a normal week.”
Fox played the second of two consecutive DP World Tour tournaments in Abu Dhabi last year at Al Hamra Golf Club, and won the “half defense” of his title at the same course, where he claimed his second victory on the tour.
The Foxes, who will be alongside defending champion Nicolai Højgaard in the first round, said he hopes to clear the knowledge of the career dividend this week.
“Of course I’m not technically defending… but yeah it’s nice to go back to a place I won before and it brings back a lot of happy memories from last year. I feel comfortable on the course.
“It’s probably a little different than a year ago. They set it up a little trickier, they grew the rough a little bit, they brought in some of the fairways, and it’s playing a little bit firmer and faster than last year. I think the future is going to be maybe not as low scoring as it was, but it’s certainly nice to get back to a familiar place.
“A few changes and conditions on the course have a big effect. I am certainly a worthy winner again and hopefully you will be me.
Fox picks their first round at 5pm today.
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