Brandt Snedeker of the USA has won The Tour Championship on the PGA Tour at East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta, Georgia. He finished three shots clear of England's Justin Rose and also secured the 2012 FedEx Cup title.
Snedeker fired a closing round of 68 to outplay his rivals for the tournament, and the $10 million bonus awarded to the winner of the season-long FedEx Cup.
After securing one of Davis Love III's wild card picks for next week's Ryder Cup, Snedeker more than justified that selection with his performance at East Lake.
He came into the final round tied for the lead with Justin Rose and moved clear at the top with a birdie at the 3rd. A ball in the water on the 6th resulted in a double bogey, but the American kept his nerve and struck back with a birdie at the 8th.
Three more birdies on the run for home, including a holed shot from off the green on the 17th, gave Snedeker a comfortable cushion with only the par-3 18th to play.
He played to the left of the green there and received a free drop from the grandstand. He pitched on and took two putts to end up winning by three strokes.
"At the end of the day, I had complete confidence of what I was doing out here," he said. "I don't know where it came from but I'll try to rekindle it more often.
Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy led the FedEx Cup standings coming into this event following two straight victories in the two previous playoff events. The 23-year-old had a chance coming into the final round, but he found trouble on the front nine with bogeys at the 4th and 7th holes and a double bogey on the 6th. In the end, he closed with a 74 to finish back in a tie for 10th. Tiger Woods was another of the favourites to suffer a disappointing closing round. He bogeyed the opening hole and had dropped three more shots by the 6th. The former World Number 1 did well to come home in one-under-par to limit the damage and finish the tournament in tied 8th place.
The Tour Championship East Lake GC, Atlanta, Georgia Sep 20 - 23, purse $8,000,000, par 70
1 Brandt Snedeker (USA) 68 70 64 68 270 $1,440,000 2 Justin Rose (Eng) 66 68 68 71 273 $864,000 T3 Luke Donald (Eng) 71 69 67 67 274 $468,000 T3 Ryan Moore (USA) 69 70 65 70 274 $468,000 T5 Webb Simpson (USA) 71 68 70 66 275 $304,000 T5 Bubba Watson (USA) 69 66 70 70 275 $304,000 7 Jim Furyk (USA) 69 64 72 72 277 $272,000 T8 Hunter Mahan (USA) 68 73 71 66 278 $248,000 T8 Tiger Woods (USA) 66 73 67 72 278 $248,000
Note: Player score in bold signifies Titleist ball usage
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Fergus is Golf Monthly's resident expert on the history of the game and has written extensively on that subject. He is a golf obsessive and 1-handicapper. Growing up in the North East of Scotland, golf runs through his veins and his passion for the sport was bolstered during his time at St Andrews university studying history. He went on to earn a post graduate diploma from the London School of Journalism. Fergus has worked for Golf Monthly since 2004 and has written two books on the game; "Great Golf Debates" together with Jezz Ellwood of Golf Monthly and the history section of "The Ultimate Golf Book" together with Neil Tappin , also of Golf Monthly.
Fergus once shanked a ball from just over Granny Clark's Wynd on the 18th of the Old Course that struck the St Andrews Golf Club and rebounded into the Valley of Sin, from where he saved par. Who says there's no golfing god?
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