8am Round-Up: Jason Day planning to play in Masters

World No 3 Jason Day is still planning to play in the Masters next week but will have no hesitation in pulling out of the season's first major if he needs to be with his mother as she fights cancer.
Jason Day is intending to play in the season's opening major at Augusta National next week. Picture: Ian RutherfordJason Day is intending to play in the season's opening major at Augusta National next week. Picture: Ian Rutherford
Jason Day is intending to play in the season's opening major at Augusta National next week. Picture: Ian Rutherford

Day was in tears as he explained his decision to withdraw from last week’s WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play in Texas so that he could be with his mum, Dening, as she prepared to undergo for lung cancer.

That surgery took place in Columbus, Ohio, and the family is now awaiting results of tests to see if cancer is present in her lymph nodes.

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“Obviously, I’m still nervous because we’re still waiting to see ... if it has spread or not,” said Day, speaking during a video conference set up by organisers of the PGA Tour’s Zurich Classic in late April.

“From there, we have to kind of come up with a game plan whether to go chemo - a form of chemo radiation - or something else.”

The Australian, whose father, Alvin, died of cancer when he was 12, added: “It’s still kind of a bit of an emotional time for me.

“Obviously, I’ve been hanging out with my mom a bit and seeing her and she’s recovering well.

“She’s a tough lady, but it’s hard because I look at her and she’s on the pain killers and all that stuff, what she needs to do to recover ... but I can’t help but think of my dad when I see her in that situation.

“My mom told me not to worry about it. It’s hard to do that. It’s easy to say ... but it’s really, really difficult.

“So currently I’m scheduled to play Augusta ... but if things don’t come back the way we want them, I don’t know what’s going to happen.

“It’s very, very difficult to even think about playing golf when a loved one is going through such a traumatic experience.

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“Once I get past this initial stage, hopefully I’ll find some balance and I’ll be able to kind of move on and really focus on getting my game back.

“Unfortunately, I’m human. I like to feel like I’m always on it, I’m always ... ready to go and trying to compete and I want to get back to that stage, but sometimes it’s very, very difficult.”

Day has an excellent Masters record, having finished second and third in the last six years. He was also 10th behind Danny Willett 12 months ago.


Man of the moment Dustin Johnson has pulled out this week’s PGA Tour event in Texas so that he is refreshed for the Masters.

Johnson, who has won his last three events, including two since he became world No 1, had been scheduled to tee up in the Shell Houston Open.

“After a great deal of thought and consultation with my team, I have decided to withdraw from this week’s Shell Houston Open,’’ he said in a statement.

“Having played seven rounds of competitive golf in the last five days, I feel it is best to give my mind and body a much-needed rest heading into Masters week.”


Jordan Spieth’s preparation for the Masters has included a practice round with star NFL quarterback Tom Brady.

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The New England Patriots playmaker posted a picture of himself playing Augusta National with Spieth, the 2015 champion, on social media site Instagram.

A fourball also included Augusta National member Jimmy Dunne and Kevin Plank, chief executive of Under Armour.

“Trying to beat @jordanspieth in golf is like trying to arm wrestle @therock,” wrote Brady, who mastermined the greatest comeback in Super Bowl history in February.

The photo showed the group on Hogan’s Bridge at the 12th hole, where Spieth’s hopes of winning a second straight Green Jacket disappeared last year as he ran up a a quadruple- bogey 7.


Henrik Stenson has delivered official confirmation that he’s heading back to Ayrshire, scene of his memorable Open Championship win last summer, for the Scottish Open’s first visit to Dundonald Links in July.

“Obviously it is going to make it a special week for me at the Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open,” said the Swede of his visit to a venue that lies just six miles from where he beat Phil Mickelson in an epic duel to claim the Claret Jug.

“It’s a tournament which has helped me prepare really well for The Open and I’m looking forward to the new venue at Dundonald.

“I played the Scottish Open in 2013 and went on to finish second to Phil in The Open the following week.

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“Then I missed Scotland for a couple of years and didn’t do that well the following week.

“I played last year the week before Troon and we all know how that turned out, so playing in the Scottish Open definitely helps to fine tune the links game.”


Stirling’s Laird Shepherd stormed five shots clear of the field at the halfway stage in the Scottish Students Championship at Moray.

It followed the Englishman carding a four-under 66 in the second round on the New Course at the Lossiemouth for an impressive 133 total.

His closest challenger heading into today’s closing 36 holes is another Stirling player, Chris MacLean.

Stirling are also dominating the women’s event, with team-mates Gemma Batty and Sinead Sexton sharing top spot after matching each other so far with a brace of 71s.


Taking advantage of the calmer early conditions, Marc Murphy and Charley Allsopp set the pace in the fifth staging of the Links Cup in East Lothian.

Playing on Gullane No 2, Murphy (Dartford) and Allsopp (Stamford) carded matching 39 points under the Stableford, with the former claiming the first-day spoils on a countback.

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The duo sit two points clear of Minto’s Gary McDonagh heading into today’s second round at North Berwick, with a visit to Kilspindie on Thursday before the final circuit over Gullane No 1 on Friday.

Defending champion Daniel Wise (Mallorca Puntiro) opened with 32 points in an event that features eight French challengers, as well as three German competitors.

Ian McLaughlan (Kinross) and Robert Allen (Biggar) are in a five-strong group on 35 points.