Arnold Palmer 1929 – 2016.
“Success in this game depends less on strength of body, than strength of mind and character.”
Rory McIlroy wins the Tour Championship trophy and with it the FedExCup at East Lake Golf Club.
Rory carded a final round -6 under par 64 to get into a Tour Championship play-off against Ryan Moore, -6 under 64 today and Kevin Chappell who scored -4 under 66 in the last round. They all finished with -12 under par totals, and the play-off commenced.
1st play-off hole was the par five 18th, which Rory and Ryan both birdied, and Kevin dropped out with a par. They both carded par 5 the second time around. The duel then moved to the par three 16th, which they both scored par. The fourth play-off hole was the par four 16th, which Rory birdied to win the tournament, and the FedExCup.
Rory’s road to the play-off began when he made Eagle two at the par four 16th, pitching in from 137 yards;
“I knew I was right back in the golf tournament.”
“Just to see that ball drop, and everything that’s come together for me this year, to pull it off was really special.”
“I’ve made it no secret that it’s one of the last things I feel like I had left on my golf CV, and I made it a big goal of mine to win it.”
“To be here and to win the FedExCup, to play the way I have in the last few weeks to get it done, is very special.”
Ryan made sure Rory had to work hard for his victory;
“I just wanted to make him earn it for that much money at least.”
“I wanted him to make the putt. It was nice to get up and make it, but you give a great player like him that many opportunities, and he’s going to make one eventually.”
Kevin was the in form player coming into this tournament, and was left wondering what he has to do to win. This tournament was the fourth time this season he had been runner-up. Losing twice to Jason Day, the No. 1 player in the world, and once to Rory McIlroy. In those final rounds, Kevin’s scores had been 67, 69, 69 and 66.
“I’m proud of the way I fought, it just wasn’t enough.”
Azahara Munoz made history becoming the first Spanish ladies player to win their home tournament, the Ladies Spanish Open, at Aloha Golf Club in Marbella, which in fact is about a ten minute drive form her hometown.
Azahara sunk a birdie putt on the last hole of the Ladies Spanish Open to win the title by one shot at -10 under par, after her last round -2 under par 70;
The tears that flowed emphasized how important this win was for her;
“It means everything. I love playing at home and finally we got this tournament back and hopefully for many more years.”
“To be able to play here and just sleep at home, it’s amazing.”
“It’s been a hard week and at the beginning of the week I was so stressed out and so anxious and finally, when I got to the first tee on Thursday, I felt so much better.”
“It is amazing to win in front of everybody and so many people came out, so I’m really grateful to them.”
“I had so many opportunities and I hit so many putts that didn’t go in, but I kept telling myself, if I keep patient, it might happen and if I lose it, then it definitely won’t happen.”
“I kept it together and finally I made such a good putt on the 17th and it’s funny because I had a similar putt that I made in Chantaco a few years ago and I thought about it and told myself, ‘You made this one before,’ and I did.”
Beth Allen claimed second place at -9 under par, a last round of even par 72 not good enough to seriously challenge for the win;
“Obviously I’m super disappointed, especially having had a three shot lead going into the back nine.”
“I just didn’t play very well on the back nine and she did, so it’s fine. It’s second but it’s not the outcome I wanted.”
Sophie Walker, -1 under 71 today, holed her second shot for eagle, on the 18th, from 138 yards using a ‘little’ 7-iron to jump up the leaderboard, into a share of third place with Georgia Hall,-4 under 68, both with -5 under totals.
There are two players tied at the top of he Tour Championship leaderboard, Dustin Johnson and Kevin Chappell.
Kevin & D.J. / getty
Kevin and DJ are tied at the top of the Tour Championship leaderboard at -8 under par for the tournament, giving them a two shot lead over the field.
Kevin carded -2 under 68 today in his third round, and will give it everything he has to win tomorrow;
“I got nothing to lose, I’m going to go out there and give it all I’ve got, and Dustin is going to play great golf.”
“He’s been in this situation a lot this year, and it will come down to one or two shots.”
Dustin could have been in a much stronger position, but his putting is not as good as the rest of his game;
“I like my position, I feel like I’m playing really well.”
“I need to go out tomorrow and do the same thing I did today, and hopefully try to finish off a little better.”
Rory McIlroy, and Ryan Moore, both returning scores of -4 under 66 today, are close to the leaders at -6 under par, and share second place.
Rory needs a great result here to have a chance of winning the FedExCup;
“I just need to try and win this golf tournament, and whatever happens after that, happens.”
“It would just be great to try to win the TOUR Championship, and if the chips fall my way, then so be it.”
Ryan is focused on this tournament, the Ryder Cup pick for the American team is out of his control;
“Completely out of my control.”
“I came here this week to win a golf tournament, and I’m 100 percent focused on that.”
American Beth Allen leads the Ladies Spanish Open, after 54 holes at Aloha Golf Club in Marbella, Spain.
Beth made birdie on the final hole today to post a Ladies Spanish Open third round of -5 under 67 to lead by one shot with a -9 under par total.
Beth loves the climate here, it reminds her of home;
“It was a little bit of a slow start but I was happy with my back nine: 31 is always a nice score coming in.”
“I reached the 10th, which was handy and then two putts for birdie and I hit a really good shot in on the 11th and holed that and 12th is a tough hole so I was happy with a par.”
“I particularly like this area and it does really remind me of southern California, where I’m from, so I love it.”
Local favorite Azahara Munoz holds second place, a third round -2 under 70 keeping her just one shot back at -8 under, saying she had trouble with her putting today;
“I gave myself quite a few chances and couldn’t make enough putts today.”
“I just couldn’t get the speed of the greens and get my ball to the hole. I also made a few par putts that kept me going, five, six footers, so I’m only one back.”
“I wish I was leading but one stroke’s nothing with 18 holes to go.”
Diana Luna, Italy and Sophie Walker, England, are up to joint third on 4-under after rounds of 69 and 71.
Diana played with a bit of pain from a frozen neck;
“Sometimes they say beware of the sick golfer and I was less concerned with my scores than the other days and it worked out better.”
Sophie had to work hard today;
“It was up and down on the front nine with a few birdies and a few bogeys.”
“I started with two birdies and then went back to level and birdied six, and then after that it was steady pars.”
“I had to work a little bit harder today and get up and down a few more times.”
The Porsche European Open has been reduced to 64 holes due to the long delays caused by early morning fog at Golf Resort Bad Griesbach, in Germany. Alex Levy, from France, still leads comfortably at the end of the second round.
Alex came back on day three to complete his one hole of the second round at -8 under par 63, and sit on top of the Porsche European Open leaderboard at -17 under par, and will take a four shot lead into the final and third round tomorrow.
“I had four good shots and a nice par today but it was no good coming up this morning and seeing the fog again.”
“But it’s okay, I just stayed patient and made two good shots, one from the tee and one from the fairway and that’s all I wanted to do.”
“I don’t watch the leaderboard overnight. I’m just trying to think about my own game and do the best that I can and that’s the most important thing.”
Michael Jonzon, from Sweden is in second place at -13 under for his two rounds, he also carded a -8 under par 63 in the second round;
“I always said I function well under these circumstances.”
“I struggle more just trying to make cuts because I can put a lot of pressure on myself. I know what I can do and sometimes I try too much.”
“I’ve been there before. I’m just going to go out tomorrow and try to shoot as good as I can, whatever happens after that is not in my control.”
“I’m going to be trying as hard as I can and be proud of my effort tomorrow.”
In third place at -12 under par is Ross Fisher from England, he had a modest -6 under par 65 second round.
Home favourite Martin Kaymer -7 under 64 is T4 at -11 under par alongside another German in Florian Fritsch, who also carded a second round -7 under 64.
D.J. Dustin Johnson is in charge of the Tour Championship, and also the FedExCup, leading after the second round at East Lake Golf Club.
Dustin Johnson / getty
Dustin carded -3 under par 67 today, to lead the Tour Championship after 36 holes at -7 under par, a one shot advantage going into the week-end.
Kevin Chappell is in second place at -6 under par, he shot a second round -2 under par 68, to stay in touch with the leader.
Kevin Kisner, even par 70 today, and Hideki Matsuyama, +1 over 71, share third place, at -3 under par for the tournament.
Big news from the tournament, World number one Jason Day has been forced to withdraw from the competition, citing his back injury. He farther aggravated the problem when hitting a driver off the deck. The withdrawal means he can not now win the FedExCup;
“When I get to the top of the swing, as soon as my hips start to unfold and then there’s that little bit of separation, it just crunches down.”
“It just hurts.”
“I put the tee in the ground at the BMW Championship, and my back went out.”
“Last time it went out, I changed a diaper. So it’s nothing where I go and physically make a move at it during a swing and my back goes out.”
“It literally is from the smallest things, picking up a pillow, picking up something off the ground, or just moving the wrong way.”
A statement from Jason’s management team read;
“The injury is a strained ligament in his lower right back with a muscle spasm. He withdrew as a precautionary measure.”