‘Long John’ to be a big hit at Plough

John Daly
John Daly
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One of golf’s most colourful characters will be spending an evening in Preston later this month.

Two-time Major champion John Daly will be holding court at the Plough At Eaves pub, in Eaves Lane, Woodplumpton on Saturday, November 22.

Famous for his love of garish trousers while out on the course, the 48-year-old American will be lifting the lid on his eventful career in the sport.

There are plenty of tales to tell – not least his unique playing style, his loud and brash attitude combined with his rough-and-tumble personal life.

Perhaps best known for his rotund physical appearance, blond mullet-style haircut and the ability to drive the ball big off the tee, Daly – nicknamed Long John – first hit the headlines when he won the 
US PGA Championship in 1991, in Crooked Stick Golf Club in Carmel, Indiana.

The Californian went into the tournament having not earned automatic entry but a spate of withdrawals saw him sneak into the draw.

Legend has it that he drove through the night from his home in Memphis and arrived in Carmel on Thursday morning not knowing whether he would be in the field.

The withdrawal of Nick Price, due to the imminent arrival of his first child, enabled Daly to walk to the first tee as the ninth and final alternate.

Having never played at Crooked Stick before and without the chance to play a practice round, the American commandeered the help of Price’s caddie Jeff Medlin.

The partnership proved to be the perfect combination as Daly stunned the watching galleries with a famous victory.

Over the four rounds, he shot 69, 67, 69 and 71 – giving him a three-stroke victory over Bruce Lietzke.

That success earned Daly a cult following in the sport and he became a star attraction around the world overnight.

It was in 1995 that the father-of-three collected his second – and up to now – final Major when he won the Open at St Andrews.

On that occasion, he was forced into a four-round play-off after Italy’s Constantino Rocco holed an amazing 60-foot putt to claim A birdie on the final hole.

However, in the play-off, the American dominated proceedings to finish four shots ahead and won the famous Claret Jug.

As famous for his life off the course as on it, Daly has been married four times and at various stages as battled alcohol, gambling and health problems.

Plough At Eaves landlord Mark Bond – a former golf pro himself – has got to know Daly over the years and invited him to the pub.

Preston North End manager Simon Grayson is also expected to attend the evening, which costs £200 per head. For ticket details contact Mark Bond on 01772 690233.