PGA Tour

Day finally gets to grips with 'local' course

Jason Day (Getty Images)
Jason Day (Getty Images)

Dublin - It has taken Australian-born and Cleveland-based Jason Day now nine appearances in the Memorial to finally put himself into contention for victory on his 'local' course at Muirfield Village.

Day, 30, birdied four of his closing eight holes in a second straight 68 to move to eight-under par and a share of the clubhouse lead midway through the second round of the $7.1 million event.

Joining Day early atop the board were 2014 Memorial winner Hideki Matsuyama of Japan (71) and the American duo of Wesley Bryan (68) and JB Holmes (66).

Day is among a handful of players to have won twice in this 2017-18 season having clinched the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines in January and the Wells Fargo Championship at Quail Hollow in May.

But for a player currently ranked eighth in the world, the Muirfield Village course located less than a 30-minute drive from his Stateside residence has not always been to his liking.

Day made his debut in the Jack Nicklaus hosted Memorial in 2008, missing the cut. He returned a year later to share 27th place.

Day next teed it up here in 2012, again missing the cut, and since then his best finish was last year's tie for 15th.

"This is my home course and I think I just sucked on it for a long time," Day said.

"I don't think there was any reason why, I just didn't really play well. But I'm hopeful I can change that, because I feel different this year," added Day, who is primed to continue a remarkable run of multi-win seasons on the PGA Tour, having won five times in 2015 and four times last season.

"I was just saying that I've two wins under my belt this year already, so you're not trying to come into a week (having) no wins and trying to get something going or push it a little bit.

"On a golf course like this, you can't short side yourself when the greens are quick and when you're trying to push things and trying to get things going for the season, you can typically get yourself into some pretty poor positions.

"So, over the last 10 years it's taken me awhile, I think I know where the bad positions are now."

Matsuyama had the distinction in 2014 of winning on his debut in the Memorial.

After an opening round of 65 the current world No 10 added a second-round 71 that included four birdies and three bogeys as he seeks a sixth tour title and his first since last August at the WGC Bridgestone Invitational.

"I am especially happy that I'm playing well here," he said. "This is a great tournament, it's like a major, even though it's a preparation for me for a major, but I'm pleased."

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