A look back at the final day of the AP Invitational
Rory McIlroy back to winning ways; Tiger Woods back in contention – suddenly golf’s future looks a whole lot brighter.
This year’s Arnold Palmer Invitational was missing a host of stars, including Dustin Johnson, Justin Thomas and Jordan Spieth, but you would have been forgiven for not noticing.
With all due respect to the three American big guns, having the likes of McIlroy, Woods, Justin Rose and Henrik Stenson duking it out over the final round provided all the excitement we needed.
The on-course action was so gripping it seemed like everyone was trying to catch a glimpse.
Henrik Stenson led the tournament for three rounds, but could not complete the victory despite a respectable final-round 71.
As for Tiger Woods, once again he was a factor on Sunday. Three birdies on the front nine saw him move to within one shot of the lead.
Two disappointing bogeys on the back nine undid much of his good work, however, before McIlroy’s heroics put pay to his chances altogether.
Still, a top-five showing at Bay Hill after a runner-up finish at the Valspar? Woods has every reason to be smiling.
This was always going to be McIlroy’s day, however. Three birdies on the front nine put him in prime position for an assault.
McIlroy’s closest challenger down the stretch was Bryson DeChambeau, but even a superb eagle on 16 wasn’t enough to stop the Northern Irishman’s charge.
McIlroy simply couldn’t miss on the greens, and with his long game cooperating as well, he proved a totally unstoppable force.
McIlroy drained no less than five birdies over his last six holes – none of which ever looked like missing.
So in the zone was McIlroy that by the time the last putt dropped on 18 to hand him a three-shot victory, it hardly seemed a surprise.
It may not be the article of clothing he wants to win the most, but the Arnold Palmer Invitational’s new red jacket fit very snugly indeed.
Palmer is no longer with us, but we’d like to think he enjoyed Sunday’s action. The players certainly did him proud.
Rory McIlroy looking to kick on after emotional Ryder Cup
McIlroy broke down in tears in a rare show of emotion in Wisconsin.
Jon Rahm keen to win at Valderrama for ‘historic reasons and nostalgia’
The Spaniard is hoping to perform on home soil.
‘Stupid is as stupid does’ – Phil Mickelson criticises club length restriction
The R&A and USGA have brought in a ‘model local rule’ to limit all clubs other than putters to a maximum of 46 inches.
Top-level golf tournaments to be given option of imposing limit on club length
This could curb the big-hitting likes of Bryson DeChambeau in their continual quest for greater length off the tee.
THE CJ CUP: Vegas links that could help us hit the jackpot this week
The PGA Tour remains in Las Vegas this week and several players in the field have some home advantage which could prove significant.
Betting preview: Sam Burns to continue impressive form in the Shriners Children’s Open
The PGA Tour heads to Las Vegas this week and Planet Sport tipster Jack Kelliher has four selections for the tournament.
Feuding rivals Bryson DeChambeau and Brooks Koepka to clash in ‘The Match’
Tensions have run high between the pair since early 2019.
Four golfers to oppose short priced favourite Jon Rahm with in this week’s Open de Espana
The European Tour heads to Spain for three weeks and the action begins at Club de Campo Villa Madrid.
Danny Willett enjoys perfect birthday with Alfred Dunhill Links Championship win
The Englishman won for the first time in over two years.