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Jason Day conceded his match at the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play to Pat Perez on Wednesday after six holes, withdrawing from the tournament to spend time with his mother, Dening, who he revealed is battling lung cancer.
“My mom has been here for a while, and she has lung cancer,” a tearful Day said after pulling out of his match. He added, “It’s really hard to even comprehend being on the golf course because of what she’s going through.”
An Australian doctor diagnosed Dening with terminal lung cancer at the start of the year, giving her 12 months to live. Day, whose father Alvin passed away from stomach cancer when he was 12 years old, brought her to the United States with the hopes of access to better medical care. Dening has a Friday procedure scheduled to remove what Day describes as a 3-4 centimeter-size mass in her lung.
“I’m glad I brought her over here,” Day said. “It’s been very hard to play golf this year. It’s been very, very emotional, as you can tell. I’ve already gone through it once with my dad, and I know how it feels.”
Despite his mom imploring him to play through her treatment, Day admits he cannot fathom spending time on his game, so he is heading home to Ohio to be with her.
“Emotionally, it’s been wearing on me for a while. And I know my mom says not to let it get to me, but it really has, so I just need some time away with her to make sure that everything goes well,” he said, adding, “She is the reason that I’m playing golf today. Family’s first, and it’s just a hard time.”
Day remains hopeful that the Friday procedure can help his mother’s condition.
“I’m just hoping for a speedy recovery for her, and we can get this behind, and hopefully she can live a long, long life.”
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