AUSTIN, Texas – Overcome with emotion, Jason Day withdrew from the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play on Wednesday after just six holes.
In a tearful statement, Day said his mother, Dening, was diagnosed with lung cancer earlier this year. Although doctors in Australia initially considered the ailment terminal, after a recent battery of tests at the Ohio State University Medical Center in Columbus, Ohio, her prognosis improved and she was scheduled to undergo surgery on Friday.
“It's been very, very emotional, as you can tell," Day said. "I've already gone through it once with my dad and I know how it feels. It's hard enough to see another one go through it." Day's father, Alvyn, died of stomach cancer when Jason was 12. “So as of now I'm going to try to be back there with my mom for surgery and make sure everything goes right with her.”
Day, this week’s defending champion at the Match Play, was 3 down in his match against Pat Perez when he withdrew following a double bogey-7 at the sixth hole. Perez was awarded a full point for the concession. The other two players in Group 3, Marc Leishman and Lee Westwood, will also receive a full point for the matches in which they would have faced Day.
Day missed the WGC-Mexico Championship this month with an illness and his next scheduled start is the Masters in two weeks.
“Ideally this is something that, the Masters ... whatever happens, happens. Whether he plays in that, I know it’s something he wants to do,” said Bud Martin, Day’s manager. “But anyone around here with a mother, you know she comes first. He felt that’s where he needed to be.”