EAST MOLINE, Ill. John Daly is coming to the John Deere Classic.
Tournament director Clair Peterson made the announcement today after Daly recorded his best finish of the year Sunday at the Buick Open in Michigan, where he shot 11-under par 69-70-69-69-277 and finished tied for 16th place.
The blond bomber who last played here in 2003 will bring his 300-yard drives and his colorful personality to the Tournament Players Club Deere Run in Silvis, Ill., where the event is set for July 12-15. Australia's John Senden is defending champion.
"We're really excited to welcome John Daly to the John Deere Classic," Peterson said. "John is one of the more popular players in the game and we know the fans will be eager to see him.
"Like a number of other players in our field, John is a major championship winner. He can still hit his tee shots more than 300 yards, and he's obviously a very colorful personality. We're glad to have him."
Daly has been playing this season on a minor medical exemption after injuring his right forefinger at last year's Fry's.com Open. Daly's previous best finish this year was in February when he tied for 22nd at the Nissan Open in Los Angeles.
Daly has played in the Quad Cities five times over the years - at Oakwood Country Club in 1991, 1992, and 1998, and at TPC Deere Run in 2000 and 2003.
A two-time major champion, Daly won the 1991 PGA Championship and the British Open in 1995.
Expected to join Daly at TPC Deere Run is Brian Bateman, who won the Buick yesterday with a 12-foot putt on the 72nd hole to shoot 15-under par for the event and avoid a playoff.
This year's John Deere Classic will be headlined by current Masters champion Zach Johnson and features a number of past major champions - including Paul Azinger, Steve Elkington, Todd Hamilton, Lee Janzen, Steve Jones, Bernhard Langer, and Bob Tway.
There's also a group of highly accomplished PGA Tour veterans, including this year's winner in Memphis Woody Austin, Jesper Parnevik, and Kenny Perry.
Today's John Deere Classic began in 1971 as a satellite tour event called the Quad Cities Open. The event joined the regular PGA Tour the following year. John Deere assumed title sponsorship of the event in 1999.
Tickets for the John Deere Classic may be purchased by visiting www.johndeereclassic.com or by calling 800-336-4655.