Sunday, November 24, 2013


        Australia's Jason Day (left) and Adam Scott with the World Cup. Picture by courtesy
                                                of Getty Images(c)

Home hero Jason Day secured an emotional victory in the ISPS HANDA World Cup of Golf with an imperious display in Melbourne.

A week after losing eight members of his family in Typhoon Haiyan, the 25 year old delighted the large crowds at Royal Melbourne Golf Club – which included his mother Denning – by seeing off Denmark’s Thomas Björn by two strokes.

The World Cup was Day's first tournament in five weeks and came less than two weeks after he learned that eight of his relatives, including his grandmother, died in the devastating Nov. 9 typhoon in the Philippines.
His mother, who immigrated to Australia from the Philippines 30 years ago, and sister were just off the green on 18 at Royal Melbourne. They both hugged him as he walked to the scoring tent to sign his card.
"It's just been an amazing tournament for me," Day said. "My mother, my family, coming down to support me. I'm just so happy the hard work has paid off, and I'm glad it happened in Melbourne.
Day’s closing round of 70 for a ten under par aggregate total, allied to his team-mate Adam Scott’s seven under par score, also meant that Australia were crowned World Cup of Golf winners for the fifth time, beating the American team of Matt Kuchar and Kevin Streelman by ten shots.
Unlike Scott, who eagled the first hole, Day started his round with a bogey, but rallied with back-to-back birdies from the third hole to regain the initiative.

Björn, who trailed Day by one shot overnight, also birdied the third and fifth holes to remain in the hunt, but the turning point arrived at the sixth hole, where the Australian holed his approach shot for an eagle.

In contrast, Björn dropped a shot and, despite three birdies on his back nine, the Dane’s round of level par 71 ultimately saw him finish two shots shy of the winning mark on eight under par.

Day collected a total of US$1.5million – US$1.2million for winning the individual event, and a further US$300,000 for the team competition – for the biggest victory of his career.  

He said: “It was a complete honour to win here at Royal Melbourne. To win in front of the Melbourne fans who are so passionate about their sport was an amazing feeling. 

“It feels great. I just really don’t know what to think right now. All the hard work and dedication that I have put into my game over the last five or ten years is paying off. It’s taken me a while to get my second win as a pro, and it couldn’t be more fitting with Scotty by my side winning the World Cup here in Melbourne.”

Björn was left to rue two bogeys in his last three holes, but the Dane was typically magnanimous in defeat.

He said: “Obviously I’m disappointed, but on the whole it’s been a great week. It’s been a real pleasure to play on this golf course, and I couldn’t be happier for Jason winning. He has gone through a rough time of late, and for him to even be here is massive.

“So to go and win a golf tournament in the circumstances, and for Australia to win the team event, that’s what all the people came to see. There’s nothing for smaller populated countries than when their sports stars do really well, and these two guys [Day and Scott] are fantastic.”
Scott, whose opening round of 75 included a nine, signed off with a best-of-the-day 66 to take third place on seven under par, one shot ahead of Kuchar, who closed with a level par round of 71. 
After a promising start to the tournament - they were joint sixth after the first round - Scotland's Martin Laird and Stephen Gallacher subsided to 10th place on eight-over-par 576 - 25 shots behind winners Australia.
Individually, Laird earned $68,000 for a T20 finish on two-under-par 286 with scores of 67, 72, 74 and 73.
Like Laird, Gallacher broke par only once with scores of 74, 71, 72 and 73 for a share of 38th place on 290. He earned $45,500. 




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