Francesco Molinari won his first PGA Tour title with a convincing eight-shot victory at the Quicken Loans National in Maryland.
The 35-year-old entered the final day level at 13 under with Mexican Abraham Ancer, but two birdies on the front nine saw him pull away from the joint overnight leader.
He then went on a stunning run after the turn, with a 50ft eagle on the par-five ninth sparking him to pick up six shots in five holes before parring his way home for a 62.
The victory is the Italian’s first in the United States and further increases his chances making a third Ryder Cup appearance in September.
Speaking of moving into 42nd in the FedEx Cup standings after the victory, he told a press conference streamed on the PGA Tour’s Twitter page: “I came here obviously because I was right on the bubble in the FedEx and I wanted to gain a better position, so I guess job done.”
He added: “It was (a big risk), but the risk on the other side was I was 123rd on the FedEx Cup. When you play two tours, you need to balance the two things.
“It wasn’t an easy decision, I thought until the last minute whether to go to France or to come here but seems like it was the right choice in the end.”
Molinari finished at 21 under, eight shots clear of American Ryan Armour and 10 ahead of Tiger Woods.
The 14-time major winner fired a closing 66 to record his third top 10 in 11 events this season since returning from injury.
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