Returning Day seeking response at Harbour Town

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World number one Jason Day headlines the invitational field at the RBC Heritage this week in the absence of two of his main rivals.

Day is back at Harbour Town Golf Links for the first time since 2013, as he looks to bounce back from his top-10 finish at the Masters last week, which had promised so much initially.

The 2015 U.S. PGA Championship winner's hopes of a 10th PGA Tour title have been boosted with Jordan Spieth and Rory McIlroy both bypassing the tournament after Augusta.

This year's RBC Heritage still features eight players among the top 30 in the world rankings, including Zach Johnson and 2015 runner-up Kevin Kisner, while 2013 champion Graeme McDowell will tee off on Thursday.


CASEY PRIMED FOR SECOND TOUR TITLE

Englishman Paul Casey is the player to watch. He overcame a stomach illness to finish tied for fourth at last week's Masters, following his best round of 67 at Augusta. Casey is without a PGA Tour win since 2009 but with three top 10s in his last four starts, that drought could be about to end.


FAVOURABLE CONDITIONS EXPECTED IN SOUTH CAROLINA

After the grind of the Masters, the 132-man invitational field head to Harbour Town Golf Links at Hilton Head Island with moderate breezes set to help the players. The seaside golf course has also been renovated since last year, while holes two, five, 16 and 17 have undergone changes in terms of design, with Harbour Town two yards shorter than it was in the last four years.


DAY OUT TO JUSTIFY RANKING

Australian Day would have expected more from his trek to Augusta, Georgia. After storming out of the blocks and threatening to eclipse the course record at one stage, Day faltered late in the opening round and never recovered. He went on to finish in the top 10 in his quest for a first Masters crown, six shots adrift of winner Danny Willett. It was not ideal but the 28-year-old now has the chance to make it three wins in a five-week span.

FURYK WON'T DEFEND CROWN

After going 100 starts without winning, two-time champion Jim Furyk broke through by outlasting Kisner in a play-off last year. However, the American veteran will not take to the field this time around due to a wrist injury. "I'm sorry I won't be able to compete. This is my favourite course on the PGA Tour and this is my favourite stop on the PGA Tour," Furyk said after the tournament's opening ceremony on Monday.

PLAY-OFF BECKONS?

Additional holes have been required at Harbour Town for four of the past six events after Furyk prevailed against Kisner 12 months ago. Matt Kuchar and Carl Pettersson were the only two players to win in regulation during that period.


DECHAMBEAU READY FOR PRO DEBUT

Bryson DeChambeau played his last tournament as an amateur at the Masters, where he tied for 21st last week to win the Silver Cup as the low amateur. Asked if he was ready to become a professional, the 22-year-old DeChambeau said: "I think so. I hope so. I've had six or seven months to prepare to be professional. I've played in numerous professional events, and travelled across the world trying to gain experience, and to end it off here at the Masters is something special, so yes."