Darren Clarke may become the third Northern Ireland based golfer in a row to win a major but he as he co-leads the British Open but he says the secret of his success may be that he’s fat.

His agent Chubby Chandler believes so. "Chubby has always said that I play better fat," Clarke said replied. "I've obviously been adhering to that theory."

The London Independent states Clarke is a throw back “...a walking, smoking, Guinness-drinking counterblast to the notion that the modern professional golfer has to be a finely-tuned athlete with a six-pack. Clarke keeps his six-packs in the fridge.”

He has also overcome great personal tragedy after his wife Heather died of breast cancer a few weeks after he helped lead Ireland and Britain to a Ryder Cup win at the K Club near Dublin in 2006.

That puts it all in perspective for him "I wouldn't say it's a breeze," he said of the notion that he could win the British open”, "but nothing would be more difficult than it was at the K Club."

Now he is happy in love again with former Miss Northern Ireland Alison Campbell, the beauty Clarke says "has put my life back on track".

He moved his family back to Northern Ireland to be with her and he says it has brought new stability,

"But now meeting Alison - thanks to a blind date set up by Graeme McDowell - has put my life back on track.

I've moved back home to Portrush from London and it's a lot easier to play better whenever family life is much more stable.

"I've been around long enough and won 20, 21 times so that feeling never really disappears.

"So far this week I've played quite nicely and I believe the forecast for the weekend is very, very poor - which I quite look forward to.

"I've been doing a lot of practice in bad weather... because that's what we get at Portrush. Hopefully it will stand me in good stead.

"Right now I'm very pleased where I'm at. On this golf course anything can happen but I have found my feeling, a little bit of pace on the greens and, hopefully, come Sunday I can get myself right in the mix."

Read more: http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/sport/golf/3698306/Darren-Clarkes-missus-is-a-Major-hit.html#ixzz1SG9r91Wb