Former world number one Jason Day felt the final round two-over-par 73 that dashed his hopes of a maiden Australian Open title on Sunday pretty much summed up his disappointing 2017 season.
In contention throughout the week on his return to his home Open for the first time in four years, Day started the day with a one-shot lead but finished it in fifth place three shots behind unheralded compatriot Cameron Davis.
“I just didn’t play my best and obviously it’s not great to shoot two-over par on the final round when you’ve got the lead,” the world number 12 told reporters. “It’s obviously a little bit disappointing to come out and not finish it.
“But I’ve just got to kind of look back on it and see what I need to do for next time, because you can’t be perfect all the time and I played three terrific rounds actually, the first three rounds, I just didn’t put it together on Sunday.”
Day’s round on Sunday turned on his ninth hole, where he hit the lip of a bunker as he tried to get out of the sand and his ball ended up in the water. “Just a few bounces here and there, obviously the double (bogey) on nine wasn’t the greatest,” he said.
“I was on the wrong side of momentum and if I could just get on the right side of momentum, it may have been a different outcome today.”
The 30-year-old major winner will, therefore, finish what he described as an “indifferent” year without any sort of title to his name for the first time since 2012.
“I didn’t have the greatest year,” Day said. “I just didn’t quite have everything clicking. Had everything clicking the first three days here and then today was just a little bit off.
“I just haven’t quite put it together this whole year and I’m looking forward to getting some time off and trying to decompress a little bit and not even think about golf.
“This whole year I’ve been kind of stressing about how I can get better and better and better, and unfortunately when you worry about playing good, sometimes you can actually worry about it too much and force of habit a little bit and actually not end up playing good at all.”