Day, Scott end 24-year World Cup drought
Jason Day has helped end a 24-year long winless drought to deliver Australia victory in the World Cup of Golf at Royal Melbourne.
Day combined with reigning Masters champion, Adam Scott in storming to victory by a massive 10 shots to claim Aussie success for the first occasion since Wayne Grady and Peter Fowler captured the 1989 World Cup of Golf in Spain.
Jason Day and Adam Scott, winners of the 2013 World Cup at Royal Melbourne Golf Club (Credit: Anthony Powter)
And it is also the first occasion Australia has lifted the trophy at Royal Melbourne since Peter Thomson and Kel Nagle did so in the 1959 World Cup of Golf.
Day also captured the ‘Individual’ honour along with a $US1.2m first prize cheque in posting a final round 70 to defeat Denmark’s Thomas Bjorn by two shots with a 10-under par tally.
The 27-year old started the final round one shot ahead of Bjorn and despite a bogey at the first, Day was never headed when he holed a 95-yard wedge shot for eagle at the par four, sixth hole.
It is also Day’s first professional victory on home soil since turning professional in 2006.
“It feels great to win in Australia for a first time but then I really don’t know what to think about right now,” said Day.
“All the hard work and dedication I have put into my game, especially over the last five to 10 years when I have really taken it seriously, is paying off.”
“It has taken me a while to get my second wind and it just seems fitting to have Scotty by my side and for the two of us to share victory in the World Cup down here in Melbourne.”
“Even though it was very difficult conditions again today out there, it was a lot of fun, and today I learnt a lot about myself and I am just really excited for next week to get started, as well.”
“But I am definitely going to embrace being a World Cup champion tonight and while I won’t go too crazy, I will definitely have a drink or two.”
“Right now, I am just the happiest guy.”
However it was also emotional occasion for Day whose Philippino-born mother Dening and sisters broke into tears in witnessing Day’s triumph.
Just days prior to the start of his tournament Day learn that his grandmother, uncle and six cousins were among thousands killed by Typhoon Haiyan and with Day revealing he will set up a form of relief package with his prize cheque.
Scott commenced his round in brilliant fashion holing a 120-yard wedge shot for eagle at the first and birding his next two holes.
Both Day and Scott are heading to Sydney for Thursday’s starting Australian Open at Royal Sydney where Scott will be looking to become only the second player in the history of Australian golf to win the ‘Australian Grand Slam’ – success in the Australian PGA, Australian Masters and Australian Open.
“It’s going to be weird this week to wake up and not drive to Royal Melbourne,” said Scott.
“But seriously I now have to get myself ready for the Australian Open and it’s something that means so much to all the Australian golfers, and at a great venue like Royal Sydney.”
“I am looking forward to challenge and obviously Jason is playing great while there is a host of other players who would badly love to win this coming week.”
“So I am going to have my work cut out.”
Despite Scott’s third place finish he will still remain in second place on the World Rankings behind 14-time Major winning Tiger Woods.
Bjorn had led after two rounds with a pair of 68s but could manage no better than a pair of 71s over the weekend.
However the Dane was very gracious in defeat.
“Naturally, I am a fraction disappointed but I just didn’t play great today,” he said.
“The turning point was obviously Jason holing his second shot at six but as a whole it’s been a great week and it’s been a great pleasure to play on this golf course.”
“I couldn’t be happier for Jason. He has gone through a rough time of late and for him to even be here is a big thing and then to go and go and win the golf tournament, and for him to also win the team event, is fantastic.”
“There’s nothing that is better for a small populated country like Australia when their sports people do really well and Jason and Adam are both fantastic.”