Twenty-four hours after he had collapsed on the course, Day again struggled with dizziness and exhaustion during Saturday’s third round of the U.S. Open.

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UNIVERSITY PLACE — Four holes into the most remarkable round of Jason Day’s career, his longtime caddie worried they would have to quit.

And yet, despite his continued spells of vertigo, there was Day on the 18th green Saturday evening at Chambers Bay, knocking in his second consecutive birdie to move into a tie for the lead at the U.S. Open at 4-under par.


 

Twenty-four hours after he had collapsed on the course, Day again struggled with dizziness and exhaustion during Saturday’s third round of the U.S. Open.

His caddie and instructor, Colin Swatton, wasn’t sure they would make it through the round after their climb up to the steep green on No. 4. Day would card his second bogey there, dropping seven shots back of the lead.

His turnaround from there was remarkable — he played the final 14 holes at 4 under to finish with a 2-under 68, the second-best score of the third round.

Day enters Sunday in a four-way tie for the lead.

“That was the greatest round I’ve ever watched,” Swatton said. “I’ve watched a lot of golf, and to watch it live was pretty special.”

Day did not meet with the media following his round. He had taken medication that was making him drowsy, and Swatton said Day went to lie down in an RV immediately after the round.

“I felt pretty groggy on the front nine just from the drugs that I had in my system, then kind of flushed that out on the back nine,” Day said in quotes released by the USGA. “But then it kind of came back — the vertigo came back a little bit on the 13th tee box, and then felt nauseous all day.”

On multiple occasions in his career, the dizzy spells had forced Day to withdraw from tournaments, most recently at the Byron Nelson Classic last month.

Back up on a hillside green Saturday, at the 508-yard seventh hole, Day put his right forearm atop Swatton’s left shoulder, leaning on his caddie like never before.

Day’s knee buckled on the 17th tee box as he bent down to place his tee and ball in the ground. He stuck his tee shot from there to 18 feet and knocked that in for birdie — one of his five birdies on the back nine (with one bogey, on No. 11).

“I said to him, ‘They might make a movie about that round,’ ” said Swatton, who began teaching the 27-year-old Day some 15 years ago in Queensland, Australia. “It was pretty impressive. It was up there with Tiger Woods playing with a broken leg (actually a torn knee ligament) and winning the U.S. Open (in 2008).”

Day, No. 10 in the world rankings, is one of the more popular players on the PGA Tour who has yet to win a major championship. Twice he has finished second at the U.S. Open, in 2011 and 2013. What a story it would be for him to hoist the trophy at Chambers Bay on Sunday.

“I said, ‘You’ve got the heart of a lion, you get to show the world today you get to be the greatest you can be and look, let’s do it,’ ” Swatton said. “And he just put his head down and kept walking one foot in front of the other. It was pretty impressive.”

Day had collapsed on the ninth green, his final hole, during the second round Friday afternoon. He stayed down for several minutes while medics attended to him. He then took his final three shots to card a bogey.