DECHAMBEAU WINS MEMORIAL AFTER PLAY-OFF
Bryson DeChambeau holed a 12-foot putt for birdie on the second play-off hole to secure his second PGA Tour title at the Memorial Tournament held at Muifield Village, Ohio.
DeChambeau shaved the hole with a par putt to win at the 72ndhole, but he atoned back on the 18th green at the third time of asking to edge out Byeong Hun An, with Kyle Stanley having been eliminated at the first extra hole.
The leading trio finished tied on 15-under par with Patrick Cantlay a shot further back, after a disappointing back nine after he led by two at the turn, while Justin Rose came up just short in his bid to dethrone Justin Thomas as world No 1.
DeChambeau had struggled to make much happen over the front nine as he missed a number of fairways, although he picked up a stroke at the fifth. But he found himself trailing by two after Cantlay claimed four birdies in six holes from the third.
DeChambeau pulled one back at the 11th, and then moved into the lead at the 12th, after making another gain, while Cantlay dropped a shot.
Stanley appeared to be out of contention as he ran up a double-bogey five, but he then reeled off four consecutive birdies to lift himself into a share of the lead, while An birdied 15 and 17, and narrowly missed out on another at the last, as his 69 set the clubhouse target at 15 under.
DeChambeau then split the 18th fairway, but Stanley’s wayward drive cannoned off a tree and into a dreadful lie in the thick rough, forcing him to lay up well short of the green. DeChambeau blocked his approach to the back-right of the green to leave himself a tough two-putt from 60 feet, and Stanley gave himself a shot at saving par when he clipped a wedge to 15 feet. Stanley failed to scramble his par after DeChambeau left his tentative first putt eight feet short, and his putt for victory veered across the front of the hole and missed on the low side.
That sent DeChambeau, Stanley and An back to the 18th tee, but Stanley would depart after needing four shots just to hit the green, while An and DeChambeau both pulled off superb saves from the greenside rough to extend the contest.
DeChambeau gained the advantage again, as he followed another perfect three-wood with an approach to 12 feet, while An tugged his second towards the gallery before playing a sublime flop-shot to five feet to put the pressure on the American. But DeChambeau was up to the task, and he rattled in a confident putt for victory and earn congratulations from tournament host Jack Nicklaus, lifting his first PGA Tour title since last year’s John Deere Classic.
Rose fired a closing 70 to finish three shots off the pace on 12 under, one ahead of the two players above him in the world rankings, as Justin Thomas (68) and Dustin Johnson (67) both enjoyed strong finishes.
Rory McIlroy was also in the group at 11 under, as he followed his third-round 64 with a closing 69, while Tiger Woods endured another frustrating day on the greens, as a level-par 72 saw him drop 16 places down the leaderboard on nine under par.