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Donald makes shock exit at Malaysia Open

updated 1:19 PM EDT, Sat March 23, 2013
Luke Donald missed the halfway cut for the first time in his professional career at the Malaysia Open.
Luke Donald missed the halfway cut for the first time in his professional career at the Malaysia Open.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Luke Donald misses halfway cut at Malaysia Open
  • Donald had never previously missed a halfway cut in his professional career
  • Thailand's Kiranradech Aphibarnrat holds a one-shot lead going into final round
  • Rain-affected tournament reduced to 54 holes

(CNN) -- World No.3 Luke Donald missed the halfway cut for the first time in his career after failing to shine at the rain-delayed Malaysia Open.

Donald recorded rounds of 73 and 74, leaving him three shots off the cut mark after enduring troubles with his putter.

But the Englishman, who is still seeking his first Major title, is confident he will be back on form for the U.S. Masters at Augusta next month.

Read: Tiger vows to 'clean up' after more late lapses at Bay Hill

"I've got a couple of weeks off to get ready for Augusta and I'll obviously be very diligent in my preparation," Donald told reporters.

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"I would have loved to go back home in form, but in golf you just never know. We've seen it many times before when people go into tournaments with very little form and win, including majors. So you just have to keep plugging away and hope it's your turn.

"The greens here are very different from what I play on. They are a little slower than what I'm used to and I just didn't adjust or adapt to them.

"I just couldn't read them for the life of me. I'd think it was right to left and it went the other way. I got John (his caddie) to read a few too and we were seeing the same things.

"Tee to green I wasn't that far off. But it's the first time I've missed the cut in a regular European Tour event since I've been a pro.

"So I'm very disappointed for myself and disappointed for the fans who have come out to watch me."

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At the top of the leaderboard, Thailand's Kiranradech Aphibarnrat currently heads the field by one shot from South Africa's Charl Schwartzel.

But with the rain playing havoc with the playing schedule, organizers announced that play would begin early Sunday with the tournament reduced to 54-holes.

Tournament Director David Garland told the European Tour website: "We've had another very large storm this afternoon, so suspended play for the day and after further discussions with our major sponsor Maybank the tournament has been reduced to 54 holes.

"We want to wrap it all up with the crowd and everyone here tomorrow."

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