Jason Day prevails in Monday Morning Finish
It all started on the back nine at Torrey Pines South Course in San Diego Sunday afternoon at the Farmers Insurance Open. The lead swayed back and forth with J.B. Holmes. Ryan Palmer, Alex Noren and Jason Day. Day set the stage posting -10 in the clubhouse, while the other three positioned for the win or the tie. On 18 Jason Day had a long birdie putt, but missed it and made his par.
When Jason finished he was tied for 1st at -10 with Alex Noren who was a hole behind. Palmer was at -9 with Holmes at -8. Day had 4 birdies on the front nine and 2 bogeys on the back. Holmes finished at -8 due to a bogey on 14, 15 & 16. He saved his par on 18. Noren saved a par on 17 to go into 18 at -10. Needing a par to tie on 18, Noren needed a good tee shot on the 18th par 5 and he did just that putting his drive right in the middle of the fairway. With a win, Noren would qualify for The Masters and the PGA Championship. This was set up to be Noren’s first win in America.
Noren left himself 225 yards to clear the lake on the par 5 18th, he got all of it and his ball went into the tunnel behind the 18th and laid to rest to the side of the astro turf walkway. At -9, Palmer laid up on the 18th fairway from an uphill lie in the right rough just in front of the right fairway bunker. Palmer hit an awesome approach shot which struck the green approximately 25 to 30 feet past the pin and with backspin the ball came back to rest just around 2 feet from a birdie putt to put him in a playoff with Jason Day.
Holmes laid up but hit the rough lakeside. Having to lay up eliminated J.B. from playoff contention. Noren took a drop well right of the entranceway where his ball had rested. After 2 drops he had an uphill lie for his pitch, but a downhill green with the lake right behind. A little too much and trouble was lurking. He needed to be aggressive, but yet on target. He hit it perfect, but a little too much speed took the ball to the outer-fringe past the hole and the ball rolled back onto the green leaving him a probable 2 putt for par and the tie.
Noren’s putt for the birdie and win stayed high, but left him inches for the par and tie. He made the par and Ryan Palmer made the birdie giving Jason Day a 3 way play off.
Starting on 18, the first playoff hole left Palmer’s tee shot on the right side of the fairway and Day ended up in the left far fairway bunker causing him a certain lay up. Noren’s tee shot ended up hitting the fairway, but dribbled off in front of the left fairway bunker in the rough. All three players laid up and once on the green. Noren left himself an 8 inch birdie, while Palmer left himself a long birdie try. Day had a downhill putt around 16 feet and he sunk it. Noren made his birdie and the playoff was now left with 2.
The 2 man playoff went until after dark leaving a Monday morning finish. Of the 5 playoff holes, they went birdie, birdie, par, par and birdie leading into Monday. On playoff hole 6, Monday morning, Day had the honors on the 18th par 5 and his drive went into the right rough bunker-side. Noren drove his 3 wood into the left fairway, but his drive trinkled into the 1st cut left with a decent lie. Knowing Day had to lay up, Noren went for the green on his second shot with a hybrid. He was one foot from a great shot. The ball hit over the lake just at the green but with the downhill side it rolled back into the water. Jason laid up perfectly and with his short game all he had to do was play. He had to feel relieved that it came down to a wedge shot and not a long hit, due to his back problems all week. He stated that he had had an MRI 2 weeks prior and that he was adjusting his swing to adapt to his back issues. Day couldn’t have hit the shot any better. He left himself around 2 feet from a birdie. Norens drop left him with a pitch that he had to make to bring on play off hole #7, but it wasn’t meant to be. Jason Day finished with the win and now sits at #9 in the Fed ex Cup standings.
Below are the current Fed Ex Cup Standings:
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