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19th Hole

Looking back at the extraordinary 2014 WGC-Match Play final: Day vs Dubuisson

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@skysportsgolf

Though we may be missing what was scheduled to be the 2020 WGC-Match Play this week, it seems like as good a time as any to delve into the vault and look back on a classic Match Play final.

Here I’ll take you back to what was one of the most memorable finals in recent history between Jason Day and Victor Dubuisson.

Day (26) had been tipped for greatness throughout his young career and had raced effortlessly to the final in the desert.

Less was known about Dubuisson (23). Despite a win a few months earlier at the Turkish Airlines Open, the Frenchman had appeared previously just three times stateside, failing to make much of an impression.

The Match

Dove Mountain, Arizona was the setting, and by the 13th hole, the match looked done and dusted, with the heavy favorite Day forging himself a 3up lead – before it began to slowly slip away.

Dubuisson took the 13th hole, but despite a birdie at the 15th, the Frenchman was staring down the barrel remaining 2down with two to play. Facing a 12-foot putt to stay alive on 17, Dubuisson held his nerve pouring the putt in the middle to take it to the last.

On the final hole, Dubuisson saved par from the bunker which left Day two putts from 68-feet to wrap up his first WGC title.

The Australian’s first putt settled 10-feet from the cup, and ready to capture the second PGA Tour title of his career, Day’s par attempt was dead-center from the moment the ball left his flat-stick. But he agonizingly failed to hit it, leaving it short and in the jaws and taking us to extra holes.

Back in 2014, as silly as it sounds knowing what we know in 2020, doubts lingered about Day’s ability to close. He had won just once on Tour (2010), had three times been the bridesmaid at majors and at the 2013 Masters held the lead with three holes to play before stumbling home with two fatal bogeys.

With Day losing a 3up lead with just six holes to play and then leaving his 10-foot putt on 18 for victory short, it seemed like the 26-year-old could be hit with another mental scar.

But those fears looked to alleviate themselves when on the first playoff hole his competitor found the base of a cactus.

The final will forever be remembered for the sequence of events that followed.

Dubuisson’s Magic

In any other circumstances, Dubuisson would likely have taken an unplayable. But in a do or die position, the Frenchman summoned up one of the most remarkable up and downs you’re likely to see – knocking the ball from the cactus to 4 feet from the hole and extending the match.

On the very next hole, Dubuisson found trouble again in the form of a bush surrounded by rocks. To do it once was remarkable, to do it twice was borderline ridiculous. But the enigmatic 23-year did just that, swiping at the ball, hitting it to 8-feet, holing the putt as if it was nothing and extending the final.

All Day could do was laugh or cry. He chose the former.

The After-Effect

Day would go on to win the final, birdieing the fifth playoff hole and perhaps changing the course of his career. Tagged with an inability to close before the WGC-Match Play win, this victory was undoubtedly the catalyst in the Australian’s career. Nineteen months after winning his second title on Tour, Day had racked up a further five victories, including his single major title to date at the 2015 PGA Championship.

For Dubuisson, later that year he would shine at the Ryder Cup at Gleneagles, winning 2.5 points from three matches and was described by playing partner Graeme McDowell as “Europe’s next superstar”.

As of 2020, that proclamation has failed to materialize, with Dubuisson suffering massively with a perforated eardrum which saw him appear just twice in 2018, and he has since only twice claimed top-10 finishes on the European Tour.

Day didn’t trail once over his final 53 holes at the 2014 event, triumphing in the desert to kick start an incredible run that would see him climb to the summit of the sport.

But ask anyone who watched the 2014 WGC-Match Play final and their first recollection will almost always be the two extraordinary escapes the cool Frenchman gifted us to prove that sometimes there can be glory in defeat.

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Gianni is the Assistant Editor at GolfWRX. He can be contacted at gianni@golfwrx.com. Follow him on Twitter @giannimosquito

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Josh

    Mar 27, 2020 at 11:02 am

    Best back to back up and downs I’ve EVER seen. I still remember watching that event love and was in disbelief. Partly luck, bit for lightning to strike twice in a row….

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19th Hole

Celebrate Women’s Golf Day virtually with some great online resources

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Due to Covid-19, this year’s Women’s Golf Day will take place on September 1st, but today golf fans can celebrate the women’s game virtually on the Women’s Golf Day website.

On the website, you can view over 24 hours of action with over 50 videos free to view with content being shared from all around the world celebrating women in the game of golf.

Some of the videos you can check out include instructional tips, inspirational messages, fitness advice, and so much more from some of the most prominent female names in the sport.

You can also bid on some awesome items in the Women’s Golf Day charity which includes rounds on some of Ireland’s best courses to a signed flag from the 2013 Solheim Cup with all proceeds benefiting Covid Relief.

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19th Hole

GolfWRX Classifieds Spotlight (06/03/20): Proto PXG, Ping G410, Tour Issue TaylorMade

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At GolfWRX, we love golf equipment plain and simple.

We are a community of like-minded individuals that all experience and express our enjoyment for the game in many ways. It’s that sense of community that drives day-to-day interactions in the forums on topics that range from best driver to what marker you use to mark your ball, it even allows us to share another thing – the equipment itself.

One of the best ways to enjoy equipment is to experiment and whether you are looking to buy-sell-or trade (as the name suggests) you can find almost anything in the GolfWRX BST Forum. From one-off custom Scotty Cameron Circle T putters, to iron sets, wedges, and barely hit drivers, you can find it all in our constantly updated marketplace.

These are some of the latest cool finds from the GolfWRX BST, and if you are curious about the rules to participate in the BST Forum you can check them out here: GolfWRX BST Rules

Member Utace10 – 2020 Proto PXG Driver 0811X+

Now is your chance to grab the first PXG 0811 X+ that has made its way to the GolfWRX Classifieds. It was launched as part of PXG’s exclusive consumer testing program, and here’s your chance to get in on the action.

To see the full listing and additional pictures check out the link here: Proto PXG Driver

Member JStang – Ping G410 LST Driver

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To see the full listing and additional pictures check out the link here: Ping G410 LST

Member Golfer75 – Tour Issue TaylorMade M1 3-wood

It’s not easy to find a tour issue fairway wood this old in almost like-new condition—it’s even harder to find one with a spec sticker still intact. The M1 offers hosel and weight adjustability along the sole, and with 13.3 degrees of measured loft in the standard setting, with your own shaft, you can build a little rocket launcher fairway wood.

To see the full listing and additional pictures check out the link here: Tour Issue 3 wood 

Remember that you can always browse the GolfWRX Classifieds any time here in our forums: GolfWRX Classifieds 

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19th Hole

GolfWRX Classifieds Spotlight (06/02/20): T.P. Mills, Toulon, Odyssey

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At GolfWRX, we love golf equipment plain and simple.

We are a community of like-minded individuals that all experience and express our enjoyment for the game in many ways. It’s that sense of community that drives day-to-day interactions in the forums on topics that range from best driver to what marker you use to mark your ball, it even allows us to share another thing – the equipment itself.

One of the best ways to enjoy equipment is to experiment and whether you are looking to buy-sell-or trade (as the name suggests) you can find almost anything in the GolfWRX BST Forum. From one-off custom Scotty Cameron Circle T putters, to iron sets, wedges, and barely hit drivers, you can find it all in our constantly updated marketplace.

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Member Puma74 – Handmade TP Mills

On the Mount Rushmore of putter makers, T.P. Mills is one of the faces you will find. Known for soft lines and beautiful custom putters this one here is a perfect example of his craftsmanship. This kind of piece doesn’t come cheap, but when you buy a Mills putter, you have the knowledge you are buying a piece of art.

To see the full listing and additional pictures check out the link here: TP Mills Putter

Member Rig14Port – Odyssey Stroke Lab Black

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To see the full listing and additional pictures check out the link here: Stroke Lab Black Putter

Remember that you can always browse the GolfWRX Classifieds any time here in our forums: GolfWRX Classifieds 

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