Jason Dufner wins USPGA Championship
Jason Dufner shot a final-round 68 to record a 10-under-par 72-hole total and win the USPGA Championship by two shots from Jim Furyk at Oak Hill Country Club in Rochester, New York
Jason Dufner wins USPGA Championship
Jason Dufner shot a final-round 68 to record a 10-under-par 72-hole total and win the USPGA Championship by two shots from Jim Furyk at Oak Hill Country Club in Rochester, New York.
The popular American played flawless golf in the final round to secure his maiden major championship, banishing memories of his play-off loss to Keegan Bradley in the USPGA two years ago.
In-form Swede Henrik Stenson finished third - his fourth consecutive top three - and one shot clear of compatriot Jonas Blixt, who was competing in only his second ever major championship.
There was huge anticipation before the leaders teed off, with Rory McIlroy and Lee Westwood paired together and Jason Day and Scott Piercy blazing a trail on the golf course.
Still, their challenge didn't materialise, and the performance of the final group took many players out of contention.
Dufner started the final round one shot behind Furyk, but surged one clear after back-to-back birdies at four and five.
He added another at the par-4 8th to move to 11 under, and Furyk fell two behind with a bogey of his own at the following hole.
Both players parred the first six holes of the back nine, and Stenson reached nine under with a two-putt birdie at 13.
He bogied the drivable 14th, though, and after Blixt dropped a shot at the par-3 15th, it was effectively a two-horse race.
Dufner, showing no sign of nerves, stiffed a wedge on 16 to set up another birdie, but Furyk followed him in to ensure the gap remained at two.
Both made bogies at 17 - Furyk after finding green-side rough and Dufner after a three-putt - and drove into rough on the right side of the 18th.
The veteran left his approach short in thick rough and failed to get up and down, leaving Dufner with three putts for the championship. He cosied his first effort up to the hole and tapped in for the biggest win of his career.
"It probably hasn't sunk in," said Dufner. "I can't believe this is happening to me. To come back from a couple of years ago when I lost in a play-off feels really, really good.
"I decided that I was going to be confident and put my best foot forward, play aggressive and try to win this thing.
"The last two holes were a little unfortunate but I am happy to get the job done - it's a big step in my career."
USPGA Championship Oak Hill Country Club, Rochester, New York Aug 8-11, purse $8,000,000
1) Jason Dufner - 68-63-71-68 = 270 - $1,445,000 2) Jim Furyk - 65-68-68-71 = 272 $865,000 3) Henrik Stenson - 68-66-69-70 = 273 - $545,000 4) Jonas Blixt - 68-70-66-70 = 274 - $385,000 T5) Scott Piercy - 67-71-72-65 = 275 - $304,000 T5) Adam Scott - 65-68-72-70 = 275 - $304,000 7) David Toms - 71-69-69-67 = 276 - $259,000 T8) Jason Day - 67-71-72-67 = 277 - $206,250 T8) Dustin Johnson - 72-71-65-69 = 277 - $206,250 T8) Zach Johnson - 69-70-70-68 = 277 - $206,250 T8) Rory McIlroy - 69-71-67-70 = 277 - $206,250
Note: bold signifies Titleist golf ball usage
Nick Bonfield joined Golf Monthly in 2012 after graduating from Exeter University and earning an NCTJ-accredited journalism diploma from News Associates in Wimbledon. He is responsible for managing production of the magazine, sub-editing, commissioning and feature writing. Most of his online work is opinion-based and typically centres around the Majors and significant events in the global golfing calendar. Nick has been an avid golf fan since the age of ten and became obsessed with the professional game after watching Mike Weir and Shaun Micheel win The Masters and PGA Championship respectively in 2003. In his time with Golf Monthly, he's interviewed the likes of Rory McIlroy, Justin Rose, Jose Maria Olazabal, Henrik Stenson, Padraig Harrington, Lee Westwood and Billy Horschel and has ghost-written columns for Westwood, Wayne Riley, Matthew Southgate, Chris Wood and Eddie Pepperell. Nick is a 12-handicap golfer and his favourite courses include Old Head, Sunningdale New, Penha Longha, Valderrama and Bearwood Lakes. If you have a feature pitch for Nick, please email email@example.com with 'Pitch' in the subject line. Nick is currently playing: Driver: TaylorMade M1 Fairway wood: TaylorMade RBZ Stage 2 Hybrid: Ping Crossover Irons (4-9): Nike Vapor Speed Wedges: Cleveland CBX Full Face, 56˚, Titleist Vokey SM4, 60˚ Putter: testing in progress! Ball: TaylorMade TP5x
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