Jason Day Takes Indefinite Leave From Golf

Day spoke to the media earlier

Jason Day Takes Indefinite Leave From Golf

An emotional Jason Day has withdrawn mid-round from the World Golf Championships-Match Play, to be with his mother, who has been diagnosed with lung cancer and is having surgery this week.

The Australian world No.3 conceded his match in Austin, Texas, to American Pat Perez, when three down on the seventh tee, before calling a media conference to explain his withdrawal from the tournament he won in 2014 and again last year.

"My mum has lung cancer. She had all the tests done in Australia and the doc said she was terminal and only had 12 months to live at the start of the year. The diagnosis is much better being over here," Day, who choked back the tears, said.

"She's going in for surgery this Friday and it's really hard to even comprehend being on the golf course right now because of what she's going through."

Day revealed his mother, Dening, had joined him and his family in Columbus, Ohio, since the initial diagnosis and that she had received a more positive diagnosis from doctors in the US.

Day, 29, said the emotional stress had affected his on-course results in 2017 - in February, he lost the world No.1 ranking he held for 47 consecutive weeks to Dustin Johnson and Day's lacklustre results include a best finish of fifth place.

"It's been really hard to play golf lately, this year. It's been very, very emotional," Day said.

"So I'm going to try to be back there with my mum for surgery and make sure everything goes right with her.

"This is the reason why I've obviously pulled out this week."

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Growing up in Beaudesert, Queensland, Day lost his father Alvyn to stomach cancer when Day was aged 12.

It was at that point that Dening sold the family home and moved back from Rockhampton so her son could attend boarding school at the Kooralbyn International School, near Beaudesert.

"I've already gone through it once with my dad. And I know how it feels," Day said.

"And it's hard enough to see another one go through it, as well.

"I just need some time away with her to make sure that everything goes well. This has been very very tough for me.

"I'm going to do my best and try and be there the best I can for her because she is the reason that I'm playing golf today.

"You know family's first and it's just -- it's just a hard time.

"I'm hoping for a speedy recovery for her, and we can get this behind us and she can live a long, long life."

Day's agent Bud Martin said Day "hopes" to play in the Masters at Augusta starting April 6 but couldn't confirm he would tee it up at the year's first major.

"The Masters ... I know it's something that he wants to do but she (Dening) comes first," said Martin.

"He feels bad withdrawing from the WGC-Match Play but he just couldn't go on competing

"It goes without saying that it's a real stress on Jason but the most important thing in his world is being with his mum during that surgery."

Martin revealed that since Dening had arrived in Ohio last week that further tests had provided more positive results than the initial diagnosis in Australia.

"They basically told her it was terminal and she had 12 months to live, so he brought her over here to be tested and have mutliple doctors looking at her," Martin said.

"The prognosis was more positive and they (doctors) are going to do surgery on Friday (Saturday AEDT)

"Their (doctors') expectations are, fingers crossed, that it's something that's manageable, whether that's with or without chemotherapy."

- AAP

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