After a long and illustrious career, American golfer Tom Watson played his final round on Sunday before retiring from competitive golf.
Just six weeks shy of his 70th birthday, the eight-time major champion holed out for the last time at the Senior Open at Royal Lytham & St Annes – a tournament he has won three times, saying he no longer “has the tools in the toolbox” to be competitive in the Senior majors.
Five of Waston’s major titles came at the Open, where he first captured the Claret Jug in 1975 before adding further titles in 1980, 1982 and 1983.
He almost became the oldest major champion at the age of 59, only to lose in a play-off to Stewart Cink at the 2009 Open at Turnberry.
Brooks Koepka eased to a three-shot victory at the WGC-FedEx St Jude Invitational after Rory McIlroy’s final-round misery continued in Memphis.
Koepka posted a five-under-par 65 on Sunday while McIlroy could only manage a one-over 71 to finish five back at 11 under par in a tie for fourth – the seventh time he has failed to break 70 in the final round of his 13 PGA Tour events so far this season.
Webb Simpson’s six under was the best score of the day and saw him finish second while Marc Leishman also finished ahead of McIlroy in third on 12 under after a 67.
McIlroy began Sunday with a one-shot lead but his advantage evaporated early on day four as Koepka joined him at the top of the leaderboard after firing a birdie on the par-five third hole to grab a share of the lead.
The Northern Irishman made par on every hole on the front nine but found himself two shots behind Koepka at the turn after the four-time major winner’s back-to-back birdies at five and six.
McIlroy was by then joint second with Simpson, who was playing five holes ahead of the final pair and made a flying start with an eagle on the par-five third.
Koepka extended his lead with another birdie on the 10th before McIlroy’s challenge faded with his first dropped shot of the day at the 12th.
Another bogey on the par-four 15th left McIlroy on 11 under and four shots behind Koepka. The Northern Irishman had now been overtaken on the leaderboard by Simpson and Leishman and was tied for fourth spot with Tommy Fleetwood and Matthew Fitzpatrick, which was how he would finish.
Five birdies between the 10th and 16th holes had put Leishman in contention but the Australian gave two back with bogeys at 13 and 15.
Koepka maintained his three-shot advantage to clinch the title with a bogey-free round to finish on 16 under.
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Rory McIlroy birdied four of his final five holes to card a fine eight-under par 62 and open up a one-shot lead at the WGC-FedEx St Jude Invitational.
Just over a week on from missing the cut at the Open at Portrush, the Northern Irishman, who had started the day five shots off the lead, registered nine birdies and a bogey as he moved to 12 under in Memphis.
The world number three opened what was the joint-lowest round of the week with a birdie, added another on the third and then three in a row from the seventh, before finishing strong.
World number one Brooks Koepka is second after the American produced a round of 64 featuring seven birdies and one bogey.
“It is exciting,” McIlroy told the European Tour. “He’s (Koepka) the number one player in the world, four majors in the last three years, he’s the man right now.
“I got to play with him the last couple of days and I enjoyed it. I enjoyed seeing what he can do.
“The last four missed cuts that I’ve had, I’ve finished first, second, first and 12th, I’m a quick learner. We’re very fortunate in golf that there’s always next week, you can respond so quickly from setbacks and failures.
“Tomorrow’s a new day. Whatever happened today is great but I’ve got to reset and try and go again tomorrow. I think it’s nice that I’ve seen some really good golf and I’ve seen some putts fall.
“I don’t know if it gives you momentum but it gives you confidence going forward.”
Overnight leader Matt Fitzpatrick lies third, one stroke behind Koepka, after a 69.
The Englishman bounced back from a double-bogey on the 12th and bogeys on the 13th and 15th by making successive birdies on the 16th and 17th.
When asked if he was pleased with how he fought back at the end, Fitzpatrick told Sky Sports: “Yes, definitely.
“I felt like I played pretty solid, certainly the front nine, lots of fairways and greens. I struggled a little bit in the middle of the back nine, but to get it back under par I felt was probably fair.”
Australia’s Marc Leishman, Sweden’s Alex Noren and Spain’s Jon Rahm are tied in fourth at nine under.
Fitzpatrick’s compatriot Ian Poulter is among a trio a shot further back, along with Thorbjorn Olesen of Norway and US player Billy Horschel.
And another Englishman, Tommy Fleetwood, is one of four players on seven under. He is joined by Americans Justin Thomas, Bubba Watson and Webb Simpson.
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