Jason Day in winning form for Masters “Details”

Jason Day in winning form for Masters - Details

Jason Day of Australia brought the thunder from Down Under, not to mention steady nerves on and around the greens, to add another PGA Tour victory to his extensive hit parade. The win at the World Golf Championships-Dell Match Play event in Austin, Texas also put him back atop the Official World Golf Rankings ahead of Jordan Spieth.

“I’m glad I didn’t listen,” Jason Day said. “I wanted to win so bad that I felt with how I was playing, if I kept playing the way I was going, I would be holding the trophy at the end of the week. And that’s what kept me going.”

He’s taking that confidence to Augusta National next week to start preparations for the Masters, which starts April 7. Coming off a victory last week in the Arnold Palmer Invitational, the 28-year-old Australian has won six times in his last 13 starts dating to the PGA Championship.

“It’s been a memorable week, not only to win the Dell Match Play but to get back to No. 1 in the world,” Jason Day said.

Jason Day pulled ahead with a 10-foot birdie putt on the par-3 fourth hole, stretched his lead to 3 up at the turn and was relentless with his power and short game the rest of the way.

He closed out Oosthuizen with a wedge to 3 feet for a conceded birdie on the 14th hole and a 5-and-4 victory. It was the largest margin for the championship match since it changed to 18 holes in 2011. Tiger Woods beat Stewart Cink, 8 and 7, in 2008 at Dove Mountain in a 36-hole match.

Oosthuizen, who knocked out Jordan Spieth in the fourth round to pave the way for Day’s return to No. 1, won the opening hole with a par in the championship match and that was it.

Jason Day joined Woods and Geoff Ogilvy as the only multiple winners of the Match Play.

None of this looked possible when he winced and grabbed his back on the final hole he played in his 3-and-2 victory over Graeme McDowell on Wednesday. Day had therapy for an hour before and after each match. His back got progressively better, and so did his game.

Day’s 1-up win over McIlroy in the semifinal lived up to the hype. The lead changed seven times. They combined for 11 birdies in chilly, blustery conditions.

The match turned on the 11th hole when Day got up-and-down for par with a 12-foot putt, while McIlroy missed a 6-foot birdie.

PGA: Tony Finau won the Puerto Rico Open for his first PGA Tour title, beating Steve Marino with a birdie on the third hole of a playoff at windy Coco Beach.

The 26-year-old Finau won with his third straight birdie on the par-5 18th, blasting out of the back bunker to 3 feet. Marino was just off the back edge of the green in two but left his putt from the fringe 41/2 short and missed his birdie try to the right.

Finau and Marino each shot 2-under 70 to finish at 12-under 276. Marino birdied the 18th to tie Finau, getting into the playoff when Finau missed a 6-foot birdie putt.

Finau and Marino each birdied the 18th on the first two playoff holes.

LPGA: Lydia Ko won the Kia Classic in Carlsbad, reaffirming her position as the top player in the world heading into the first major championship of the season, next weekend at the ANA Inspiration in Rancho Mirage.

Ko birdied the final three holes for her third straight 5-under 67 and a four-stroke victory over second-ranked Inbee Park.

Ko finished at 19-under 269. Park closed with a 67.

Obituary: Gary Planos, who started out as a bag boy at Kapalua and became a favorite tournament host among PGA Tour players when he ran the Tournament of Champions, has died. He was 62.

Kapalua officials said Planos was found Saturday morning in the Hawaii home where he lived the last 25 years. No cause of death was given.