Justin Rose closed with a 64 at Colonial Country Club to win the Fort Worth Invitational in Texas by three strokes from Brooks Koepka.
Justin Rose secures impressive win in Fort Worth Invitational
Rose began the final round at Colonial with a four-shot lead over Koepka and started the closing 18 strongly with birdies on the first two holes. Although he bogeyed the 3rd, the Englishman restored his four-stroke advantage with another birdie at the difficult 5th. By the turn, Rose’s advantage had stretched to five.
Koepka kept the pressure on with gains at the 11th, 13th, 15th and 17th holes. But Rose was able to respond, and he made birdies of his own at the 11th and the 15th. Rose reached 18 with a three-stroke lead and a bogey on the home hole only meant that he failed to match Zach Johnson’s tournament scoring record of 259.
Rose won for a ninth time on the PGA Tour and became the fifth player to win multiple events on the 2018 circuit. He is up to third place on the Official World Golf Ranking. Rose has now won professional events at an impressive list of classic golf courses including: Muirfield Village, Royal Aberdeen, Valderrama, Congressional and Merion. The victory goes a long way to vindicating his decision to play in this event rather than the BMW PGA Championship.
“The way I won I think is very fitting for a place that’s called Hogan’s Alley,” Rose said. “I couldn’t have dreamt a better way really. If I begin to look at the courses I’ve won at, this definitely strengthens that group even more. I’m very happy my game has turned up and I’ve been inspired by some of these great venues.”
Brooks Koepka closed with a superb 63 but couldn’t get past the excellence of Rose.
“I always seem to run into a buzz saw,” said Koepka, who also finished runner-up to Rose at this season’s World Golf Championships-HSBC Champions. “He played so well,” Koepka said. “It was impressive to watch.”
Kevin Na fired a course-record equalling 61 to tear up the leaderboard into fourth place. He also played brilliantly in round one with a 62 but that form deserted him rounds two and three, when he scored 73 and 70.
“I played amazingly today,” he said. “Round 1 and today, felt like it was Groundhog Day.”
Latin America Amateur Champion Joaquin Niemann, now turned professional, put in a strong display to finish tied 8th. He was also tied 6th on his pro debut in the Valero Texas Open.
Fort Worth Invitational
Colonial CC, Fort Worth, Texas
Purse: $7,100,000 Par: 70
1 Justin Rose (Eng) 66 64 66 64 260 $1,278,000
2 Brooks Koepka (USA) 70 63 67 63 263 $766,800
3 Emiliano Grillo (Arg) 64 67 69 64 264 $482,800
4 Kevin Na (USA) 62 73 70 61 266 $340,800
T5 Louis Oosthuizen (RSA) 67 71 64 68 270 $259,150
T5 Jon Rahm (Esp) 68 70 64 68 270 $259,150
T5 Kevin Tway (USA) 66 69 68 67 270 $259,150
T8 Corey Conners (Can) 71 68 63 69 271 $205,900
T8 Ben Crane (USA) 66 69 68 68 271 $205,900
T8 Joaquin Niemann (Chi) 68 72 65 66 271 $205,900
Note: Player score in bold signifies Titleist ball usage