Jason Day is confident he can use the momentum from his record equalling round in Maui to break through in Honolulu.
Fresh off a blistering career best round of 62 at Kapalua, which saw the Queenslander jet from eight shots back to just one out of a playoff and a tie for third at the Tournament of Champions, Day is champing at the bit to hit Waialae Country Club.
In just his fourth trip to Waialae, and first since 2011, the world No.8 is hopeful he can live up to his billing as the highest-ranked player in the first full field event of 2015.
“Before last week I was feeling confident and my form was good but the final round in Maui really helped to cement in my mind that all the hard work we are doing is getting us in a good place,” Day said.
“The putts weren’t going in the first few days but it all came together and I know if I stay focussed over the four days here in Honolulu then I can hopefully be contending on Sunday afternoon.”
The 27-year-old admitted to being in a bit of a daze as he reeled off 11 birdies in 14 holes in the final round at Kapalua, but was also mindful it is the zone he has been working towards.
While friends and family spent some time in the pool between the third and fourth rounds last week Day took time out to train his mental state and find his groove, a move that ultimately paid off.
“I was just stressing a bit. I was just thinking about my putts and asking myself why am I not holing putts because I was hitting it well,” Day explained.
“But I took some time out, cleared my mind of any negative thoughts and just resolved to trust my stroke in the final round. Thankfully it seemed to work.”
Geoff Ogilvy, John Senden, Matt Jones and Steven Bowditch have all followed Day from Maui to Oahu for the event while Marc Leishman, Robert Allenby, Cameron Percy and Stuart Appleby are also in the field this week.
Leishman returns after finishing ninth two years back and fifth last year with the Victorian hopeful of continuing his upward trend.
Only an average third round stood in his way in 2014 where he dropped from one shot off the pace to four back and then couldn’t make up the ground on Sunday.
“I’m feeling good after a great break back home in Australia and it’s great to come somewhere I’ve played well,” he said.
There is no reason why I can’t continue the form from the last few years, the course is one that suits me.”