54-year-old Daly faces cancer battle head on

John Daly has always lived life to the fullest but now he’s in for the biggest fight of his career.

The 54-year-old has revealed that he has bladder cancer and recently underwent surgery to help remove the cancerous tissue. However, he has been warned that there is a good chance of a reoccurrence.

John Daly John Daly (Credit: www.golffile.ie)

“There’s an 85% chance it comes back,” said Daly.

“So I’ve got to go back and see him in three months. They will probably have to cut it out again. It’s probably going to come back, and then another three months that you don’t know. You just don’t know.”

Daly, who defied the odds to win the 1991 PGA Championship and the 1995 British Open, has battled alcoholism, weight problems and gambling along with four failed marriages along the way.

It’s also fair to say that despite having numerous health issues including lap-band surgery to help reduce his weight, the father-of-three is said to smoke 40-a-day and drinks 12 Diet Cokes a day down from his previous figure of close to 30…yes that’s right 30 cans of Diet Coke each day.

“I’m cutting way, way back on the Diet Coke and counting the minutes before I can have a cigarette. I’m trying to quit smoking,” he said.

“The doctors aren’t saying it’s too late. Unfortunately, it’s a cancer that keeps coming back. But I’m going to listen to them, and I’m going to try and quit smoking. If it comes back, it comes back. Six months to a year, if it doesn’t go away, I’m going to live my life. I’m going to have some fun.”

In his many appearances in Australia over the years he has been a crowd favourite but has at times raised the ire of the establishment.

In 2002, after making a triple-bogey on the final hole of the Australian PGA Championship, Daly threw his putter and ball into a pond and disqualified himself from the tournament after to fail to sign his scorecard. Daly was fined almost $6,000 by the Australasian PGA Tour

During the 2008 Australian Open, he broke a spectator’s camera at Royal Sydney and then walked off during the first round of the 2011 Australian Open after running out of balls after hitting them all into the water.

“No matter what happens,” Daly said, “I’m not scared to die or anything. It would have been nice to play the last seven or eight or 13 years of my career a little more healthy. But hey, I’m still working, I’m still living life. I’m still doing the things I need to do.”

“I can accept the challenge. I’m not scared of that. I just want my kids to be OK and everyone else in my family.”