Day on top of the world

2014 02 474507653

Jason Day claimed only his second win on the PGA Tour at the weekend as he defeated Victor Dubuisson in the final of the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship.

It proved to be hard work for the Australian as Dubuisson put up a terrific fight to stay in the match at several points in the day, as the match went into a play-off that lasted five holes.

On two consecutive play-off holes, Day was convinced Dubuisson was dead in the water after this tee shot, only to see the Frenchman hit remarkable second shots to keep the contest alive.

“Vic coming down the stretch was just unbelievable,” said Day. “I’ve never seen someone as young, apart from Jordan Spieth, and in the old days Tiger Woods, how clutch he was, especially out of the cactus. I kept shaking my head because it was so surprising. There were a couple of times where I thought he was absolutely dead. The tournament was mine.”
“I felt like I had a heart attack out there a couple of times,” - Jason Day

The 26-year-old Australian last won back in 2010 at the HP Byron Nelson Championship, which may come as a surprise to some considering he has racked up an impressive six top-10s in his first 13 major starts, including three second-place finishes.

“I kept telling myself I want it more than anything in the world,” continued Day. “At the end of the day, I’ve had a lot of consistent finishes in big events and obviously I said to myself I’ve got to keep working hard and work, work, work, work, work smart. As long as I don’t give up and keep pushing through, it will happen again. And hopefully happen in bunches.”

For 23-year-old Dubuisson, it turned out to be a great week in spite of the defeat as he gained Special Temporary membership on the PGA Tour. Whether he decides to accept it is another question, but it has been a brilliant five months for the Frenchman after he won the Turkish Airlines Open in November last year.

“I just played it like I had nothing to lost,” said Dubuisson as he discussed his phenomenal escapes from the desert.

“On the first play-off hole, I was a little bit surprised it ended up in the desert. It was a great shot but then I made two very good up and downs.

Relief for Day

Day, however, was glad to have made the most of this opportunity and breathed a sigh of relied when he holed the winning putt.

“I felt like I had a heart attack out there a couple of times,” he said. “People don’t understand the momentum and the switches of momentum and the neutral ground that you have. There’s a lot of kind of strategy that goes into match play that a lot of people just don’t know about. It’s a great feeling when you’re out there playing.”

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