Jason Day wins the World Cup of Golf
Jason Day made it a little closer than he wanted to on Sunday at Royal Melbourne, but he was able to hold off Thomas Bjorn and Adam Scott to win the 2013 World Cup of Golf.
At points during Jason Day’s final round on Sunday, it looked like he was unstoppable and at others, he looked downright awful. Some of that could be attributed to the difficulty of Royal Melbourne, which made some of the best players in the world appear to play like weekend hackers, but fairly or unfairly, inconsistency has also become something that Day is known for.
Day started slow, with an opening bogey after finding the middle of the fairway on the 350-yard first, minutes after we saw his World Cup teammate Adam Scott do this on the opener:
Day would get hot soon after though, with birdies on three and four, before dropping a shot on the par-3 5th. Much like Scott though, an eagle holeout was on the cards for Day, quickly erasing that bogey:
Day’s lead would climb to four shots, but a double bogey on the 10th would bring Bjorn and Scott back into the chase, especially after Bjorn was able to birdie 11, 13 and 15. Scott was playing steady golf ahead, but he was too far back after a bogey on the 18th dropped him to 7-under par. Day’s birdie on the 15th would get him to 10-under par, and that’s where the lead would stay with two bogeys in the last three holes by Bjorn, giving Day his first win since the 2010 Byron Nelson.
- 1. Jason Day -10
- 2. Thomas Bjorn -8
- 3. Adam Scott -7
- 4. Matt Kuchar -6
- T5. Ryo Ishikawa -3
- T5. Kiradech Aphibarnrat -3
Final Team Leaderboard
- 1. Australia (Day/Scott) -17
- 2. United States (Kuchar/Streelman) -7
- T3. Denmark (Bjorn/Olesen) -5
- T3. Japan (Ishikawa/Tanihara) -5
- 5. Canada (Hearn/Fritsch) +2
What The Win Means For Day
I’m not going to speculate on what this means for Day personally after he dealt with the devastating loss of eight family members to the typhoon in the Philippines, but professionally, this is a pretty big deal. Even if it’s a limited field, a win anywhere is always good, especially one on a course like Royal Melbourne, and the fact that it’s his first win in over three years will mean a lot to him. As I mentioned above, Day is one of those guys that everyone thinks should win more based on his skill set and how good his swing looks. By no means has he had a bad run, and i actually thought that he had the best year of anyone in 2013 without a win, with the possible exception of Graham DeLaet. He’s been around the lead in so many tournaments over the years, including major championships, that I think it’s easy for people to forget that he’s 26 years old. He’s got a lot of time to figure this out, and I have no doubt that he will at some point soon.
Financially, Day will take home over $1 million for his win and he will split an additional $1 million with Scott for winning the team portion. World Ranking points will be given out as well this week, so Day will jump from his current position of 18th and probably into the top-15 and maybe even higher. I’m sticking with my prediction of Day winning the Masters this year, too.
Royal Melbourne Is A Gem
It doesn’t matter what the tournament is or who’s playing, if Royal Melbourne is the venue, I will tune in. It’s one of the best courses in the world, and it draws rave reviews from the players every time they tee it up, especially from those who are there for the first time. Now, there was some discussion that the course was too difficult, but tournament director Andrew Langford-Jones dismissed that pretty quickly, courtesy Martin Blake:
“It’s hard, it’s fast, the old lady is where we would have wanted it to be. It’s a great test of golf and I think the scores are proving that,” he said. ”The greens have got a lot more grass than at the (2011) Presidents Cup. Balls are holding, good shots from the fairway are holding. That’s the main thing for us. At the Presidents Cup there was less grass. They’re quick. We don’t like to compare but they’re certainly no quicker than Augusta, maybe about the same. I think it’s probably exactly how Royal Melbourne should be played.”
The money quote from Langford-Jones though? “We’re not playing American-style target golf”. So many of the players have gotten used to a certain style of course in the United States, and more increasingly in Europe, that coming to Royal Melbourne can be a rude awakening. Some of the players though, like Bjorn, are always going to be big fans and he actually told fellow Dane Thorbjorn Olesen that if he wants to be an elite player, that these are the kinds of courses that he needs to start playing.
For the record, this is where Ted Bishop and the PGA of America need to take the first international PGA Championship.
(h/t to Geoff Shackelford for the above link)
Golf Is Unfair, Part 725381 & 725382
See, it’s stories like these two that give hope to any recreational player. First, we’ll look at reigning Masters champion Adam Scott, and what happened on the par-4 12th in Thursday’s opening round:
Secondly, Stuart Manley had an interesting back-to-back holes on Saturday. First, he managed an ace on the par-3 third:
Then, he put up an 11 on the par-4 4th. An 11! Some of the memorable moments were firing one into the trees from the greenside bunker:
Having two chips roll down to his feet from the same spot:
And then of course, he missed the putt. He was never making that one:
To top things off, he found out later that he didn’t actually win that Cadillac since it was only for aces on Sunday. Golf really is the best and the worst.
- Other notable finishes: Kevin Streelman and Francesco Molinari (T8), Brendon de Jonge (T12), KJ Choi and Graeme McDowell (T15), Branden Grace and Miguel Angel Jimenez (T20), Thorbjorn Olesen, Nicolas Colsaerts and Vijay Singh (T25), Matteo Manassero (58th).
- Thomas Bjorn is going to be on the European Ryder Cup team, I have no doubt.