How Tiger's chipping yips saved Jason Day's career
Born-again Jason Day has detailed how a chance meeting with Tiger Woods' former swing coach provided the unexpected tonic that resuscitated his ailing golf career.
After spiralling to 175th in the rankings last September, Day is flying high again at No.20 in the world after parlaying the form of six top-10 finishes this year into a dam-busting first PGA Tour victory since March, 2018.
Day fired a sublime nine-under-par 62 in the final round to win the AT&T Byron Nelson Championship for a second time - 13 years after claiming his maiden PGA Tour event at the Texas tournament.
But the 35-year-old former world No.1 admits he may not have come full circle if not for Woods reaching out for help during his own career nadir.
"When Tiger was going through the chipping yips, Tiger invited me out to kind of go over chipping technique and everything like that," Day revealed in the afterglow of his spectacular Sunday in Dallas.
"Chris Como had seen a ton of 3D bio-testing of my chipping and they wanted to pick my brain, I guess, about what I thought and all that stuff in regards to the chipping.
"And I remember coming out of that meeting with Tiger and Chris and thinking 'there's something about Chris'.
"He's very quiet, listens very intently, but you could tell that he knew a lot about the game and knew it at a deeper level, what the club should be doing (etc)."
Then, after talking to some of his peers and learning that Como didn't have many players on his books at the time, Day sounded out the swing guru.
Como came on board in 2021 and has since helped Day rebuild his swing to alleviate the back issues that had Australia's one-time major winner considering quitting golf altogether.
"There was just something about him that drew me to him, so I just knew when I talked to him about the golf swing that he was very switched on," Day said.
Before sending out the SOS call to Como, Day was seriously contemplating retiring.
"There were definitely times when I thought 'you know what, I'm done playing the game'. Just because of the stress it was putting on me and what it was doing to my health," he said on Monday.
"Mentally, I was not there and I wasn't confident in myself.
"I honestly felt like I didn't have the game and that maybe I was one of those guys that had a really good career and injuries hurt me and through the battling of injuries and trying to get back to the top, maybe I was one of those guys who was going to go out that way.
"But I didn't want to look back on my career and know that I didn't give it a good shot to get back."
Day said if it wasn't for his wife Ellie, his caddy and lifelong friend Luke Reardon, his coach and the rest of his team, he'd likely have walked away from the sport.
"They took, not a lot of heat, but a lot of negative comments just from me about myself," he said.
"To have them as kind of like the support group that I really needed to push me through this was very important because if you don't have the correct people in place, it's very, very difficult to have any success - especially in golf.
"They taught me not to give up on yourself."