Jason Day makes first appearance since injury
Since we last saw him clutching his back as he exited the second round of the Tour Championship, Jason Day has been resting up and trying to recover, admitting that he’s only hit balls once since then.
However, over the weekend, he made an appearance in Florida for the Grapefruit Pro-Am, which was hosted by his friend, musician Jake Owen. The world’s top golfer said that Sunday’s round was the first time he has played since the Tour Championship, even on a semi-professional basis.
Testing the Waters
Speaking to USA Today, Day said that the charity event provided him with ‘a good test to see how his back is’. He said that his biggest goal for the day was to simply enjoy himself and have fun with friend Jake and his family, as it is ‘hard for a charity event to get him up to tournament level’.
After the Tour Championship, Day’s injury was officially ruled as a ‘strained ligament in the lower right back with muscle spasm’. Although this is not considered to be a long-term threat to his health, Day has suffered from various injuries over the course of his career, meaning it’s not an encouraging sign for the 29-year-old.
At the end of November, Day said that the main thing was that he remembered he ‘is in it for the long run’. He spoke about increasingly understanding that recovery takes time, and learning not to push himself as much when it comes to injuries, something that he’s evidently taken on board when it comes to getting enough rest for his back to fully recover.
Along with this, Day also spoke of Tiger Woods, another pro golfer who suffers from a bad back. In recent years, Woods has become a friend to Day, although before that, the 41-year-old was always somebody whom Day looked up to as a mentor and inspiration.
Although it began over half a century ago in 1945, the Grapefruit Pro-Am has turned into an overnight sensation, mainly due to Jake Owen’s presence at the event.
Besides Day, the event hosted a number of celebrities, including NASCAR’s Kevin Harvick who played on Saturday, and a performance on Sunday from Lady Antebellum’s Charles Kelley.
Country music star Jake Owen has a personal connection to golf, having played junior golf in Vero Beach and hoped to become a professional golfer himself. However, a skiing accident whilst attending Florida State University shattered his hopes of playing golf professionally, but, prompted him to begin playing guitar, turning his bad break into a good one.
Earlier, Day had spoken about how he once looked up to and took valuable advice from Tiger Woods, but recently, the roles have almost flipped.
Today, texts between the two usually consist of Day encouraging Woods, who has dealt with severe back issues, sidelining him for fifteen months before his recent return for his Hero Challenge in the Bahamas.
Speaking of Woods, Day said that rather than giving the arguably best player in the world golfing advice, he is simply trying to support him and encourage him to be positive.
He says that he thinks it is important for Woods to try and compete at least once a month in order to continue improving his swing speed. Although time may not be on his side and the 41-year-old may be set to retire from professional golf soon, it’s easy to see that he still has what it takes to make headlines. For more information on betting on golf, see the 888sport info page.