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Jason Day wins PGA Championship title

Posted August. 18, 2015 07:21,   


He was already sobbing even before finishing his champion’s putting at the last hole. He has been close to clinching a major title, but found it elusive time and again thus far. The moment he seized the title at long last, he recalled difficulties he experienced in the past, and was hardly able to stop weeping. It was Jason Day (28) of Australia, who won the 97th PGA Championship.

Day, ranking fifth in the world, won the title with 20-under 268 by reducing his pars by five in the fourth round of the championship that took place at the Whistling Straits Course (par 72) in Kohler, Wisconsin, the U.S. on Monday, thus clinching his first career major title. He beat by three pars Jordan Spieth (22) of the U.S., who sought to be the third golfer ever to win three major tournaments in a single season. The Australian thus received 1.8 million U.S. dollars in purse money. Twenty under par set by Day is the most under par ever set at a major PGA event. The previous record was 19 under par that was set by Tiger Woods of the U.S. at the British Open in 2000.

Day made the top 10 list at major tournaments at nine events before the latest event, but found the championship extremely elusive to him. This year alone, he started the final round tying for first at the U.S. Open and the British Open, but failed to overcome the burden in his quest for victory. He was different on Monday. He did not lose composure even in a showdown with Spieth. He displayed harmony between offensive plays banking on his driver tee shot with a flying distance of over 300 yards and clever strategy in play on the course of safely targeting the center of green. At Hole 7 (par 3), he successfully played 15-meter birdie putting, as he maintained a highly sharp sense of play. When Day placed his 18-meter long-distance birdie putting to just 50 centimeters off the cup at Hole 17 (par 3), Spieth showed his thumb up towards Day and effectively surrendered.

Day’s father was an Irish Australian and his mother was a Pilipino immigrant. Having started golf at his father’s instruction at age 3, Day would use golf clubs that were thrown away by others due to economic difficulties and wear clothes he bought at a Salvation Army store. After his father passed away when he was 12, Day saw his livelihoods further deteriorate. Going astray, Day distanced himself from study. His mother even sold their home and had him study at a prestigious international school. Regaining commitment to success due to his mother’s unwavering support, Day only focused on exercise from 5:30 a.m. every day for three years during his school years. His caddie Colin Swatton, who helped Day win the title, is his coach and mentor he has been building up relationship since he was just 12.

When Typhoon Haiyan hit the Philippines in 2013, he lost eight of his relatives including grandmother and uncle from his mother’s side all at once. He has been suffering from rare disease involving sudden attack of dizziness since 2010, and was taken to hospital due to dizziness while playing the second around at this year’s U.S. Open. Despite lingering hardships, Day never gave up and has created ‘his Day’ at last.

Day married Ellie Harvey, who was working as a bar waitress in Ohio, the U.S. in 2009, and has a son born in 2012. He established a charity foundation in 2012, and has rolled up his sleeves to help children who cannot afford meals, and donated big money to assist typhoon victims in the Philippines.