The lasting image of Jason Day holding back tears as his birdie putt on the 72nd hole at The Open came up inches short will live on forever. That’s why six days later, all golf fans can enjoy in seeing Day smile from ear to ear.
Unlike at St. Andrews where Day came up one stroke short of a playoff, the Aussie birdied the final three holes Sunday to win the Canadian Open. The win spoiled David Hearn’s bid to become the first Canadian winner in 61 years.
Day made a 20-foot putt on the par-5 18th for a 4-under 68 and a one-stroke victory over Bubba Watson. Day finished at 17-under 271 at Glen Abbey.
Jason Day birdies 17 to get to 16-under
Day was coming off a fourth-place tie Monday in the British Open at St. Andrews. The 28-year-old also fought through vertigo symptoms last month to tie for ninth in the U.S. Open. He has four PGA Tour victories, also winning at Torrey Pines in February.
“I got the ball to the hole this time which was nice,” Day said of his 21-foot putt on the last hole for the birdie that confirmed his victory.
“There’s no better feeling than coming down to the wire and contending with these guys.”
“It was just back and forth all day, and I’m so glad that I got that putt in. To be able to do that it just gives me a lot more confidence going in to the rest of the season,” Day added.
Jason Day with his third straight birdie on 18, clinches win
Watson birdied the final four holes for a 69. Bubba was coming off a disappointing two days at St. Andrews where he finished +3 and missed the cut.
Bubba Watson long birdie putt on 17
Hearn, two strokes ahead of Day and Watson entering the round, had a 72 to finish third at 15 under.
Pat Fletcher, born in England, was the last Canadian winner in 1954 at Point Grey in Vancouver, British Columbia. Carl Keffer is the only Canadian-born champion, winning in 1909 and 1914. Albert Murray, a Canadian also born in England, won in 1908 and 1913.