Jason Day wants to create a gap at the top of the world rankings this week after being fortunate to hold on to his world No.
1 status following a quiet final round at the Masters.
With Jordan Spieth seemingly in command at Augusta National last Sunday, Day’s hold on top spot was slipping only for the American to sensationally implode on the 12th hole and hand Danny Willett the green jacket.
The Queenslander began the final round on the same score as the English champion, but could not muster a charge.
But in the final wash-up, Day stayed world No.1 as now heads to this week’s RBC Heritage Classic at Hilton Head in South Carolina, knowing he must perform if he wants to stay there.
“It’s obviously huge being No.1 in the world. The biggest thing for me is just trying to extend that gap between one and two, and if I can do that I’ll stay ahead of the game,” Day said.
“It would be a nice little week if I can get up here, obviously Jordan is not playing.
“Winning takes care of everything else. If you want to become a dominant player you have to be consistent, but you also have to consistently win.
“And I have been showing that over the half of last year and early on this year, as well, but I want to make sure that I keep that level of play up.”
Harbour Town Golf Links is tight and strategic, not a bombers course, taking away Day’s advantage of length.
While this will be his fifth trip trying to win the plaid jacket given away to the winner, Day has been missing since a T30 in 2013.
A tie for ninth in 2011 is the closest he come to a win.
“Obviously it’s always fun to come back to this place because we are just so used to long golf courses, where you have to hit driver all the time,” he said.
“This golf course doesn’t necessarily take a driver out of your hands, but it makes you hit pretty much where everyone else is hitting the golf ball.
“And from there it’s positioning on the right side of the fairways and if you do that you get to the greens and hopefully make a par.”
Joining Day is a strong Australian contingent including Marc Leishman and teenager Ryan Ruffels, who continues his quest for a tour card on limited starts.
John Senden, Geoff Ogilvy, Matt Jones, Stuart Appleby, Robert Allenby and 2006 champion Aaron Baddeley round out the Aussie challenge.