Forget about all of the other young guns you have been reading about.
Jason Day, 25, is unquestionably the second best player in the majors under the age of 30 – and that makes him second best in the world among the younger set as well.
In his last nine starts in the majors, Day’s earned three seconds and a third. Go back one more major and he’s got another top 10, giving him five in his last 10 big ones. The rest of his brief 11 event career in the majors includes a 30t, 59t, 60t, two MCs, and one WD. That’s 8 cuts made in 11 appearances right out of the gate.
That is also some resume for a 25 year old, and it points towards him either being the next Sergio Garcia, or the next Mickelson, Els, Floyd, or even better – and my money is on the later.
For the record, Day closed out the 2011 Masters with 5 birdies and 6 pars on the last 11 holes to lose by two to Charl Schwartzel, but only because the South African somehow managed to birdie the final four.
At this year’s Masters, Day missed the playoff by a couple of shots because he followed birdies at 13, 14, and 15 with bogeys at 16 and 17. And, at the just completed U.S. Open, he tied Phil Mickelson for second, two back of Justin Rose. After playing the first 10 holes of the final round in three under, he played the last eight in three over.
All it seems that is missing is to improve on his closing skills – and that seems inevitable given his experience, talent, love of the game, steely resolve under pressure (the man can grind out those pars, which reminds me of a certain player with the initials TW), and that certain something that he seems to have that so many of the other young players do not.
Given Day’s third and second in the first two majors, if he does win a major and a Top 3 Slam, he would be my choice for the Player of the Year providing Adam Scott does not win another asterisk adorned major.