Matsuyama retained his title by defeating 2012 US Open winner Webb Simpson in a playoff
Hideki Matsuyama Wins Waste Management Phoenix Open Again
It’s now five wins in nine starts for world number five Hideki Matsuyama.
The 24-year-old birdied the par-4 17th, which was the fourth playoff hole, to beat Webb Simpson and become the first man to retain the Waste Management Phoenix Open since Johnny Miller in 1975.
He now becomes the most successful Japanese player on the PGA Tour with four victories.
Related: Hideki Matsuyama What’s in the Bag?
Matsuyama shot a bogey-free five-under 67 on day four to get to -17 and match clubhouse-leader Webb Simpson who shot seven-under on Sunday.
Hideki had a makeable birdie putt on the 72nd green for victory but left it agonisingly short, all it needed was a gust of wind and it was in.
54-hole leader Ben An played impeccable golf for 63 holes but a closing four-over back nine of 40 left him three short.
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In Matsuyama’s last 10 starts he has won five times, finished runner-up twice and also recorded a fifth-place finish.
He told the PGA Tour through an interpretor:
“The results have been really good these last few months, and hopefully we can just keep it going.”
“There is ups and downs, especially when I’m playing bad or having a bad day. What I’m trying to do now is to work hard, correct what I’m doing wrong, and continue on.
“It’s been a good run. I’m going to ride it as long as I can.”
Talking points from the Waste Manegement Phoenix Open:
1 – Matsuyama is the hottest man in golf currently with five wins, two runner-ups and a fifth place finish in his last 10 starts. What was surprising was how he seemed to give off the impression that he didn’t play well, despite shooting a bogey-free final round which included a tap-in eagle. He said, “I don’t know if I played that well, but I won. That’s, I guess, the bottom line.”
2 – Byeong-Hun An, or ‘Ben An’ as we know him, will surely be a PGA Tour winner soon. The South Korean will have expected to play the final two holes in one-under par which would have been enough to get in the playoff but a bogey-bogey finish will have left a sour taste. An has been close to PGA Tour victory before, losing in a playoff at last year’s Zurich Classic of New Orleans, and we expect him to win one soon with the experience he has gained.
3 – Rickie Fowler is showing some form leading up to the season’s opening major at Augusta after finishing just two shots off the playoff. The American said, “Game is good right now. It was nice this week. Didn’t make very many mistakes. Two bogeys over the four days, which is nice. I felt like I managed my game well. Definitely looking forward to going from here and on to the coming tournaments.”
Venue: TPC Scottsdale, Scottsdale, Arizona
Date: Feb 2-5
Course stats: par 71, 7,266 yards
Purse: $6,700,000 Winner: $1,206,000
1 Hideki Matsuyama (Jap) 65 68 68 66 267 $1,206,000
2 Webb Simpson (USA) 67 71 65 64 267 $723,600
3 Louis Oosthuizen (RSA) 68 67 68 65 268 $455, 600
4 Rickie Fowler (USA) 67 68 69 65 269 $294, 800
4 J.J Spaun (USA) 71 64 67 67 269 $294, 800
6 Byeong Hun An (Kor) 66 66 65 73 270 $241,200
7 Daniel Berger (USA) 71 66 66 68 271 $216,075
7 Martin Laird (Sco) 67 66 65 73 271 $216,075
9 Graham Delaet (Can) 67 69 65 71 272 $180,900
9 Matt Kuchar (USA) 64 69 69 70 272 $180,900
9 Jordan Spieth (USA) 70 68 67 67 272 $180,900
Note: Player score in bold indicates Titleist ball usage