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Day battling cold, talks mental toughness ahead of U.S. Open

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Jason Day battled vertigo-like symptoms in last year’s U.S. Open. This week’s edition begins with a less severe ailment.

Day told Golf Channel’s Todd Lewis on Monday that he practiced at Oakmont Country Club on Friday and Saturday, but took Sunday off to recover from a cold.

Day played the back nine on Monday and told Lewis that green speeds were slower than they had been on previous days.

Aside from the obvious tactics – avoiding the rough and hitting greens – Day said a positive mental approach is paramount. And that means, Day added, “You gotta understand that things are going to be bad.”

And if a player gets off to a good start early in the week, don’t try and chase him.

“You start doing that, you start making mental errors,” Day said. “You start having bogeys, you certainly bring in a lot of double bogeys, because it’s very easy to do that around here. The biggest thing is, if you’re in trouble just try and minimize mistakes.”

Angel Cabrera won the 2007 U.S. Open at Oakmont with a 5-over total. According to Day, “If we have hot, dry conditions it’s probably going to be very close to that score. There’s going to be a lot more frustration than joy on a golf course like this.”