Friday, April 18, 2014
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Day survives the magic of Dubuisson in Match Play

Jason Day

Jason Day, of Australia, celebrates on the 23rd hole after winning his championship match against Victor Dubuisson, of France, during the Match Play Championship golf tournament, Sunday, Feb. 23, 2014, in Marana, Ariz. (AP Photo/Matt York)

MARANA, Ariz. — One shot came out of bottom of a cactus, the other from the base of a desert bush with rocks scattered around it.

Both times, Jason Day felt the Match Play Championship was his to win Sunday. And both times, he watched Victor Dubuisson turn the impossible into pars in the wildest conclusion ever to a tournament that is unpredictable even in normal circumstances.

“At that time, you’re just thinking, ‘Do I need to just hand him the trophy now after those two shots?’” Day said.

Dubuisson finally ran out of magic.

Day ended the madness at Dove Mountain on the fifth extra hole when he pitched over a mound to 4 feet and made birdie, a sigh of relief as much as it was cause for celebration at capturing his first World Golf Championship.

“I kept shaking my head because there was a couple of time there where I thought he was absolutely dead — the tournament was mine,” Day said.

It was remarkable enough when the 23-year-old Frenchman stood in a fairway bunker on the 17th hole, 174 yards away and needing to win the last two holes to force overtime. He did just that with a 15-foot birdie and a par save from the bunker.

And then came back-to-back pars that defied belief.

Dubuisson sailed over the green on No. 1 and into the desert, the ball lodged at the base of a cholla. Day was in the bunker, a fairly simple shot, especially when CBS announcer David Feherty walked over and said the Frenchman would have to take a penalty drop.

With an all-or-nothing swing, Dubuisson whacked his 9-iron through the sharp needs and into a TV cable. The ball scooted up a hill covered by 3-inch rough and onto the green to 4 feet below the hole. He made par to keep going.

It was reminiscent of the shot Bill Haas pulled off at East Lake from shallow water on the 17th hole in a playoff.

Only this was even more improbable — and it came with an encore.

From the ninth fairway, Dubuisson pulled his approach left of the green, left of the bleacher and into the desert at the bottom of a bush.

“I walked over there and it was in a tree, a flower tree of some sort, in this little crevice. I mean, it looked absolutely dead,” Day said. “I’m like, ‘Yes.’ I hit 8-iron into 20 feet. There was so much pressure on him. And he does it again.”

After halving the next two holes with bogeys and pars, Day watched his opponent hit driver on the 333-yard 15th hole too far too the right. And he heard the Frenchman say under his breath, “Dead.”

He was only in the grass, but Day knew better. The chip was nearly impossible to get close. Day was 20 feet closer, in shorter grass, and pitched to 4 feet. Dubuisson hit his flop shot 30 feet past the hole and missed the birdie putt.

“I’m disappointed because I made some terrible shots,” Dubuisson said on the 15th green when it was over, ignoring the two that were as close to a miracle as golf allows.

But they were incredible. Even the great Seve Ballesteros would have saluted this performance.

“Those two shots were amazing,” Dubuisson said. “I just played it like I had nothing to lose.”

He gained plenty in defeat. This tournament will be remembered as much for two improbable shots out of the desert as Day winning a trophy he always believed would belong to him — even in the midst of shots that defied belief.

Day won for the second time on the PGA Tour and rose to a career-best No. 4 in the world.

It was the first time the championship match went overtime since the inaugural year in 1999 at La Costa, when Jeff Maggert chipped on the second extra hole of a 36-hole final. That was like watching paint dry compared with the show Dubuisson put on.

“Vic, man, he has a lot of guts,” Day said. “He has a great short game — straight out of the cactus twice. For a 23-year-old kid, he’s got a lot of game. We’re going to see a lot of him for years to come.”

Day won $1.53 million. Lost in all the theater was that he never trailed over the final 53 holes of this fickle tournament.

Dubuisson earned $906,000, all but assuring a PGA Tour card for next year. And he all but clinched a spot on the Ryder Cup team in September, moving to the top of the points table by the equivalent of about $1.5 million.

Dubuisson only reached the championship match by rallying from 3-down after six holes against Ernie Els in the morning semifinals. The Frenchman said he couldn’t sleep Saturday night, perhaps because he realized he was playing a four-time major champion.

He wound up beating Els with a par on the 18th hole to meet Day, who beat Rickie Fowler 3 and 2.

Fowler beat Els in 19 holes in the third-place match.

For all the heroics by Dubuisson over the final hour of this amazing show, Day certainly had his moments. Perhaps his greatest feat was never losing faith he would win, even as it appeared the golfing gods were in Dubuisson’s corner.

“The biggest thing was, ‘How much do I want to win?” I kept saying that to myself. Last night, I kept visualizing myself with the trophy,” Day said. “I’m glad I could finish it off. But it was a close one.”

The Associated Press

The Associated Press

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

Solano News

‘Same Time, Next Year’ opens in Benicia

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: B1

 
Man to stand trial in rural Vacaville killing

By Jess Sullivan | From Page: A1, 11 Comments | Gallery

‘We Got Next’ Comedy Tour stops at Dimitri’s

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: B1

 
Puppies to take part in Vallejo dog show

By Adrienne Harris | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
Afisivalu announces run for Fairfield council

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A3, 1 Comment | Gallery

 
Tonnesen seeks Fairfield City Council seat

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A3 | Gallery

Family matriarch celebrates 100th birthday

By Ian Thompson | From Page: A3, 1 Comment | Gallery

 
Barbecue brings big crowd, progress to Parkway Gardens

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A3, 16 Comments | Gallery

Assist-A-Grad wraps up interviews

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A4 | Gallery

 
Napa County bridge to close for work

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A4

 
Town hall on crime set in Fairfield

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A4, 8 Comments

 
Crash shuts I-80 offramp to Highway 12

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A5, 4 Comments | Gallery

Suisun City police log: April 16, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

 
Fairfield police log: April 16, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

Weather for April 18, 2014

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B12

 
.

US / World

Who gained, and what, at Ukraine talks

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
Ukrainian unity on display with peaceful rallies

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

Deal reached on calming Ukraine tensions – for now

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
Putin’s choice of words shed light on Ukraine

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

Salmon released in California river restoration

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

 
Jury convicts husband in Iraqi woman’s death

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

1 dead, 1 injured in California boating accident

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
BART fined $210,000 for worker deaths

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 1 Comment

Military shell prompted evacuation of hundreds

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Astronomers spot most Earth-like planet yet

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

California health care sign-ups exceed projections

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

 
Obama: 8 million signed up for health care

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6, 3 Comments

Dirty creek, old purse solve four-decade mystery

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

 
Man said to be homesick for prison gets 3 1/2 years

By The Associated Press | From Page: A8

Chelsea Clinton expecting first child this fall

By The Associated Press | From Page: A8

 
Holder: Hate crimes ‘an affront to who we are’

By The Associated Press | From Page: A8, 4 Comments

Nigeria: Fate of 115 abducted girls unknown

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
Spate of Mideast virus infections raises concerns

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Samples collected from oil slick not from plane

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10, 1 Comment

 
S. Sudan: 12 die after mob attacks UN base

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Peru volcano prompts evacuation of 4,000

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
Tiny power plants hold promise for nuclear energy

By The Associated Press | From Page: A13

Confused, chaotic scene described on sinking ferry

By The Associated Press | From Page: A13

 
.

Opinion

Food brings back fond memories

By Bud Stevenson | From Page: A11, 1 Comment

 
Internationally out of touch

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A11, 4 Comments

 
Watch out for grandson scam

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A11, 15 Comments

Why so much spent to find a plane?

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A11, 2 Comments

 
Editorial Cartoon for April 18, 2014

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A11

.

Living

Community Calendar: April 18, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

 
Today in History for April 18, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

My husband tells our sons that they don’t need to listen to me

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: B13

 
Horoscopes for April 18, 2014

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: B13

.

Entertainment

 
Week in preview April 18-24, 2014

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: B1

Review: ‘Heaven Is for Real’ heartfelt but dull

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Lost radio program featuring Hank Williams found

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
‘Real Housewives’ TV star faces battery charge

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

Ill, hospitalized Miley Cyrus postpones more shows

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
Garcia Marquez, Nobel laureate, dies at 87

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

Entertainment calendar April 18, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: B4

 
TVGrid

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

.

Sports

Dodgers get to Bumgarner early for win over Giants

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7 | Gallery

 
Badminton update: Rodriguez, Armijo head toward post season

By Brian Arnold | From Page: B7 | Gallery

MEL boys roll to easy win over SCAC

By Paul Farmer | From Page: B7 | Gallery

 
Short-handed SCAC girls ‘gut out’ all-star win over MEL

By Paul Farmer | From Page: B7 | Gallery

Sharks beat Kings 6-3 in Game 1

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7 | Gallery

 
Miguel Angel Jimenez set for Champions Tour debut

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8 | Gallery

Sponsorship woes put Swan Racing future in doubt

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
Ex-quarterback McNabb spends day in Arizona jail

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
Season wrapup: Sacramento Kings’ ‘new era’ off to slow start

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8 | Gallery

Clippers-Warriors series billed as must-see TV

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
Kuchar builds on Masters momentum, shares Heritage lead

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8 | Gallery

War of words in Northwestern-athletes’ union fight

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
Shumenov gets big chance in ring against ageless Hopkins

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

Montreal team sign Chad Johnson to 2-year contract

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
Seattle 1B Choi banned 50 games for positive test

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

Dodgers’ Puig focuses on baseball despite issues

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
Stanford takes lead at LPGA LOTTE tournament

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9

Boston Marathon makes room for more runners

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9

 
Vanden clinches at least share of SCAC boys tennis title

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B10

 
.

Business

Toyota Camry gets a top-to-bottom makeover

By The Associated Press | From Page: C1

 
Hot models at this year’s New York Auto Show

By The Associated Press | From Page: C2

Judge won’t order recalled GM cars to be parked

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

 
Cyber cops: Target hackers may take years to find

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

Walmart jumps into the money transfer biz, loudly

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

 
.

Obituaries

.

Comics

Blondie

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

 
For Better or Worse

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

Baby Blues

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

 
Dilbert

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

Peanuts

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

 
Zits

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

Frank and Ernest

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

 
Get Fuzzy

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

Garfield

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

 
Sally Forth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

Baldo

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

 
Beetle Bailey

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

B.C.

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

 
Rose is Rose

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

Pickles

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

 
Wizard of Id

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

Crossword

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B13

 
Cryptoquote

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B13

Sudoku

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B13

 
Bridge

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B13

Word Sleuth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B13