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Golf Australia Express : GA Express 191
J OHN Daly was golf’s original Cinderella story. But over the next two decades ‘Cinderella’ had more downs than ups and his soap opera life was never long out of the tabloids. Tomorrow (April 28), Daly turns 50 and he will waste little time before activating his rookie status on the lucrative PGA Champions Tour. Without wanting to be flippant, the fact Daly has made it to 50 and the seniors Tour is an amazing story in itself. The ‘Wild Thing’ will make his senior debut at the Insperity Invitational, to be played at Woodlands Country Club, near Houston, from May6to8. Daly, who won the 1991 PGA Championship and 1995 Open Championship, hasn’t won on the PGA Tour since the 2004 Buick Invitational at Torrey Pines and has been reliant upon sponsor’s invites for nearly 10 years. His best recent finish was a T10 in the 2015 Puerto Rico Open. But he’s buoyed by the opportunity to tee it up against many of the same guys he played against throughout the 1990s. “It’s been seven years since I had a good schedule and I’m looking forward to it,” says Daly, who has played 53 PGA Tour events since 2012 and missed the cut 30 times. “My golf hasn’t been that great, but I’ve been working hard and I’m excited to do the best I can. “It is more laid back [on the Champions Tour], that’s what everybody says, and I’m looking forward to it, and really most of the time, with them not having a cut, you can get really aggressive,” Daly said. It was that aggressive nature that not only earned him his 100-to-1 victory at the PGA but also endeared him to the golfing world, which has always been willing to continually overlook his capers off course because he’s so exciting to watch on it. Life has been quiet away from the course for many years and much of that can be attributed to his fiancée Anna Cladakis, who has seemingly been able to keep a lid on his wild ways. But some things never change. He still rips through two packets of cigarettes a day, swills Diet Coke like water and has a golf course management plan that can sometimes border on insanity. “I would rather finish fifth or sixth and avoid being conservative for second place. I was always a guy that would try and win, and I would give up two or three extra spots to try to do that,” Daly says. “Pretty much my whole career I have been aggressive.” But he admits it might take a few events before the results mirror the hard work he’s been putting in away from the course.
GA Express 190
GA Express 192