IRVING -- David Duval hopes the HP Byron Nelson Golf Championship will jump start his career. A four under par 66 has put him in second place in the tournament, one shot behind Peter Hanson.
It’s his seventh tournament this year. He has missed the cut four times.
But Duval almost wasn't able to play the opening round. When he left the course, his left elbow was wrapped in a bandage.
"I wasn't sure I was going to play today, about 25 minutes before I teed off," Duval said. "I went to the hospital Tuesday night and got a cortisone injection in my arm. I hit about 20 golf balls yesterday and play nine holes. I couldn't do it. I was in so much pain I couldn't drive the car. I had my son drive back."
Duval is playing in the field as a past champion where past winners and veterans make the field, despite being ranked beyond the 150 mark of the FedEx Cup points.
"I was in pretty bad shape," Duval said. "I thought I could play. It wasn't nearly as severe as yesterday and the day before. I was trying to be conscientious of people behind me hoping to get in. Surprisingly as the day went on, it started feel better, which is a good thing."
Duval said he didn't know how his elbow got injured. During his career so far, Duval has won 13 tournaments, including the British Open in 2001.
He currently shows up at 890 in the world rankings, a far cry from 1999 when he was ranked number one in the world after he won the Buick Open. He won four tournaments each in 1998 and 1999.
"I'm just hoping it's fine tomorrow," Duval said of his elbow. "This is how I want to play and how I'm expecting of myself. It’s not the easiest position to be in, but good play begets good play and more confidence and maybe it'll translate into a few more starts."
Duval shot a four under par 66, included six birdies and two bogeys.
"It was nothing special," Duval said after his round. "I hit a fair amount of good shots. I didn't make too many mistakes. The couple of mistakes I did make, I got away with. I managed to shoot a good score. That's kind of all that's to it."
"I'm just glad I chose to tee off today because I was seriously considering not," Duval said. "I'm tickled pink; it feels as good as it does right now."