Cameron Smith Sets New PGA Record In Historic Sentry Tournament Of Champions Epic

Cameron Smith enjoyed an historic final day in Hawaii, with a final round 65 securing him a 34-under-par tournament total and new PGA Tour record.

Cameron Smith Hugs Caddie
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Before the event began, only Ernie Els, Dustin Johnson and Jordan Spieth had reached 30-under-par in an official PGA Tour event. By the end of the final round on Sunday, that number was doubled to six! With Cameron Smith, Jon Rahm and Matt Jones all passing the 30-under mark.

In the actual tournament itself, it was Smith who claimed the victory, shooting 34-under-par for the lowest score in PGA Tour history! Picking up his fourth PGA Tour title and second in Hawaii after his 2020 Sony Open success, the Australian surpassed Els' previous record of 31-under-par which was set in 2003.

"That was intense!" said Smith following the conclusion of the final round. "Me and Jonny (Rahm) played well all day and we had Matty (Jones) lighting it up in the group in front as well, so it's definitely something I won't forget, that's for sure.

"I know it's cliché, but I was just doing everything one shot at a time. We had spoke about it earlier in the day, but we wanted to get to 35-under and we missed it by one, so that's disappointing, but I am obviously happy to come away with the W." 

Rahm And Smith Shake Hands

A final round 66 wasn't quite good enough for Rahm, as he finished at 33-under-par and just one shot back from Smith.

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Beginning the final round, it looked as if it was going to be a two-way battle between Smith and the world number one, Rahm, but it soon turned out to be so much more than just a two-way fight.

With back-to-back birdies on the 4th and 5th, Smith also made further gains at the 8th and 9th, giving himself a one shot advantage over Rahm. However, the Australian soon had further challengers in the form of fellow countryman, Matt Jones, who, after two eagles in three holes, found himself just a couple of shots back of the duo.

As Els' record of 31-under-par was duly passed, both Rahm and Smith picked up birdies at the 13th, 14th and 15th in what can only be described as one of the most enjoyable games of snap you will ever see.

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Up ahead, Jones was still not giving in. Holing a birdie putt of some 50-feet at the par-4 17th, he would then follow that up with a final birdie at the 18th. This gave Jones a tie for the course record and a 32-under-par tournament total. 

If that doesn't amaze you, then perhaps the thought of Jones being 23-under-par for both Saturday and Sunday will, with his weekend total the lowest 36-hole score to par in PGA Tour history.

Back up the 18th fairway, there was still the small matter of sorting out the winner of the event. With Smith holding a one-shot lead down the last, both him and Rahm would be greenside in two on the monstrous par-5 18th.

Becoming a battle of the flatsticks, the Australian would nosy his putt down to around three-foot, leaving Rahm with no option but to hole his eagle putt. As the Spaniard stepped up, he couldn't convert, leaving Smith to roll in his historic birdie putt for a victory that will be talked about for some time.

"I feel like I had a really good rest (over Christmas)," said Smith. "I didn't play much in the fall, instead I actually did some work on my swing and thankfully, it's worked out," he added.

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Not only did the 28-year-old hold off the world number one for two days straight, but if we go back to the first two holes of the tournament, Smith was actually one-over-par! Meaning he had played the remaining 70 holes in 35-under, a feat that realistically could only ever be done on a games console.

With the win, Smith now moves into the world's top-10, with Rahm extending his margin at the top of the world rankings over Collin Morikawa, who, at 25-under, finished in a tie for fifth.

Matt Cradock
Matt Cradock

Matt studied Sports Journalism at Southampton Solent University, graduating in 2019. Now a freelance writer for Golf Monthly and the PGA, he covers all aspects of the game, from Tour news to equipment testing and buyers’ guides. Taking up the game at the age of six, Matt currently holds a handicap of 3 and despite not having a hole in one…yet, he has had two albatrosses. His favourite player is Rory McIlroy, despite nearly being struck by his second shot at the 17th during the 2015 BMW PGA Championship.