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Daly wants to win tournament for mother

John Daly, playing golf through three tough months that culminated in the death of his mother last week, says he'd like to win this week's Australian PGA so he can dedicate it to her.

``We always hoped that they may be able to cure it, but when she fell asleep she just never woke up,'' Daly said Tuesday of the death of his 65-year-old mother, Lou, after a three-month battle with lung cancer.

``We thought she might last until the (Christmas) holidays, but at least she didn't suffer much when she passed away.''

Daly said he would honor his mother's wishes and play the Australian PGA on the Hyatt Coolum resort course, his third of three events in successive weeks in the Asia-Pacific region.

``I'd like to win it for my mom, and I'd like to do it here,'' said Daly.

He learned of his mother's death after completing the first round of the BMW Asian Open in Ta Shee, Taiwan, last Thursday after missing the cut the previous week in China. Daly will fly back to the United States after the fourth round Sunday to attend a memorial service on Monday.

``It's been tough to concentrate on golf since about July,'' said Daly. ``My heart wasn't in the British (Open), wasn't in the (U.S) PGA, just wasn't in golf.''

``It really stunned us to learn she had cancer. The first part of the year was great, the second part not very good at all. I couldn't spend a lot of time practicing. We spent a lot of time taking care of her.''

Daly said his final-round 70 Sunday in Taiwan, where he finished 11 strokes back of winner Padraig Harrington, ``was probably the best ball-striking round I had in a long time.''

``But I didn't make many putts,'' said Daly. ``It's just a matter of how comfortable I can get on the golf course.''

The par-72 Coolum course is tight in spots and might not suit Daly's long-driving approach.

``My days are always different,'' he said, smiling. ``One day it can be three-iron, the next day it can be a driver on a par-3. Who knows?''

Daly has had some rough trips to Australia -- he was disqualified from the 1992 Australian Masters when he failed to sign his scorecard after shooting an 81 in the second round. He was last at the 1997 Heineken Classic and missed the cut at the 2000 Australian Masters.

At last year's Heineken Classic at Royal Melbourne, he shot a final-round 71 and finished 15 strokes back of winner Ernie Els.

Daly will play with Greg Norman and fellow Australian Craig Parry for the first two rounds of the tournament beginning Thursday.

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