SYDNEY: Filipino-Australian Jason Day is so confident after winning the World Cup that he has his sights set on becoming world number one.
Day’s two-shot victory in the individual event at Royal Melbourne on Sunday, which helped Australia win the World Cup team title for the first time in 24 years, saw him jump to 11 in the world rankings.
It was his first title in three years and with his next tournament the Australian Open this week in Sydney, the Ohio-based player said the sky was the limit.
“It was surprising to jump from 18 to 11 and if I have a good week this week I can move inside the top 10, but being number one in the world has always been a goal of mine since back to when I first picked up a golf club,” he said on Tuesday.
“I’ve always wanted to get to that number one spot and my caddy and I always had a goal to get to number one when we first met when I was about 12 or 13 to get there was I was 22.
“I ended up getting to number seven when I was aged 23 so we fell short, but it’s still on my mind to get to that number one spot.”
It is a tough task for Day, who will not only have to pass the likes of Phil Mickelson, Rory McIlroy and Adam Scott, but also Tiger Woods.
“There is a lot of tough competitors I still have to get past, including Tiger Woods, but if I keep working hard and putting the dedication into my game I think the sky is the limit, as long as I stay hungry to want to get that number one spot,” he said.
“The biggest thing is to actually want it because you can say it as much as you like but until you say you want it then that’s it.”
While Day has been a regular contender in the Majors in recent years, Sunday’s victory was his first professional win in Australia and only his second success since breaking through in 2010 to capture the PGA Tour’s Byron Nelson Colonial.
Despite a break of more than three years between victories, Day is confident the experience he gleaned at Royal Melbourne can prove pivotal in future success.
“It’s been a long time since my first to my second professional win and while I have been a very consistent player over the last couple of years, but I just have not over the line,” he said.
“So it’s been more of a learning curve as that first win can be more like a fluke, and even though I played well at the Byron Nelson, I felt like I learnt so much more last week winning in Melbourne.”
Day’s mother Dening grew up in Central Visayas but migrated to Australia three decades ago, where she raised her son in a small town south of Brisbane. Day lost his grandmother, an uncle and six cousins when Super Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) smashed the area on November 8.