Daly, playing well, targets return to Dubai for season-ending showdown

john daly
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Thanks to a pair of good efforts in the Middle East, John Daly's 2012 season is off to an encouraging start.
PA Sport

Series: European Tour

Published: Sunday, February 12, 2012 | 5:17 p.m.

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates -- John Daly is hoping his recent trip to Dubai won’t be his only one this year. He wants to be back in November for one of golf's richest events, the European Tour’s season-ending DP World Championship.

The 45-year-old American's fourth-place finish in Qatar a week ago showed he can still compete at the top level, and his 37th place finish on Sunday in the Omega Dubai Desert Classic saw him beat Qatar winner Paul Lawrie; Abu Dhabi winner Robert Rock; and Brenden Grace, who’s won twice this season already, among others.

In his two starts on the European Tour so far this season, Daly has earned almost $150,000 and is 23rd on the money list. The top 60 at the end of the year get into the DP World Championship, and that is now his aim.

"My goals are to get my European card and maybe get into Dubai at the end of the year," he said in the Middle East. "I think if I can get in enough tournaments, it's realistic.

"It's all about confidence for me and I haven't had any in so long," he added. "It's one thing trying to play golf healthy and everything, but when you're trying to play golf hurt for four or five years like I have it gets frustrating.

"The last few tournaments I've felt good. The shoulder is good, the ribs are good, so it gives you a better chance to play good," he explained. "It's just the hardest game in the world and when you get a little confidence it really makes you thrive."