It was a relatively nervy final day as Marc Leishman took the honours at Conway Farms, his second victory of 2017 following the win at Bay Hill.
The Aussie led by five at the start of the day, Justin Rose (65) got that back to two after six birdies in his first 13 holes, but Leishman then rolled in a pair of birdies at 15 and 16 to give himself a comfortable cushion. In the end it was a five-shot win after another birdie at 18 gave him a 67 – he began the week with efforts of 62-64.
On a day of endless calculations Leishman will go into next week in fourth spot – behind Jordan Spieth, Justin Thomas and Dustin Johnson – while Jon Rahm (T5) stayed just ahead of Rickie Fowler (T2) in the battle for that all-important fifth spot on the money list.
Any played from that top five who wins the Tour Championship is also guaranteed the FedEx Cup, for those outside it is down to what the other players do. Fowler, needing a birdie to overhaul Rahm, took on the 18th with a driver from the fairway and hit a beauty just through the green but was then unable to get up and down.
– Sergio Garcia made a quite ridiculous par at the 72nd hole after getting a drop in the hazard, having pushed a fairway wood into the rocks. He considered playing it, likening it to the 17th at St Andrews, then got a free drop because of the grandstand and, after a short lifetime, finally played his third from this position.
Attempting to get some sort of rebound off the stand behind the green he made solid contact but then saw his ball go through the tarpaulin but still made his five and scraped his way to the Tour Championship.
— PGA TOUR (@PGATOUR) September 17, 2017
– Phil Mickelson made a late run at making the top 30 when he chipped in at the 15th for an eagle but eventually came up one shot shy. The left-hander needed another eagle at the 18th and incredibly saw his pitch roll over the lip but, despite making the birdie some time after his third (he was playing with Garcia), that is his 2017 season done.
Defending champion Rory McIlroy will also have the week off. He needed something special but could only finish the week two under.
– But there was good news for Tony Finau who began the week in 39th spot. The Puerto Rico champion was round in 64 to comfortably book his place at East Lake at 13 under. Jason Dufner took the last spot after his closing 70 squeezed him in.
Shot of the week
Jason Day said he pushed it a little bit but his 7-iron still found the bottom of the cup at the 16th on Friday.
“I was trying to hit a high shot, 7-iron about 182 yards and land it there,” said Day. “Probably landed at maybe 181 yards. Landed just off the green and kind of rolled down. One of those ones you kind of get away with it.”
And the good news for some lucky student is that Day is sponsored by Lexus so he donated the BMW back to the Evans Scholar Foundation which provides scholarships. BMW also donated $100,000 donation from BMW.
“Being able to not only impact one person but be able to impact another person’s life, to be able to get them to go through college as well is huge. I’m in a fortunate position, very blessed to be able to try to bless someone elsewhere.”
We weren't the only ones to capture @JDayGolf's ace on No. 17.
Check out the sites and sounds from the crowd! pic.twitter.com/za5Ibs7WVb
— PGA TOUR (@PGATOUR) September 16, 2017
I’ll be honest I haven’t been a big fan of Jason Day’s wardrobe in the past year or so (or whenever he signed with Nike..) but this was the Aussie back to his stylish best. I’d never considered a mustard trouser before, now I am. I can pay no higher compliment than that.
I’ll be honest I began this by putting the words ‘Matt Kuchar’ in the search bar. But then this from Thursday came up. Each to their own and all that but I genuinely can’t make head nor tail of what Perez is doing here..
42 out, 41 back. Minutes that is. Caps off to Wesley Bryan..
— PGA TOUR (@PGATOUR) September 17, 2017
Wesley Bryan just played another 18 while Sergio got that ruling.
— Jason Sobel (@JasonSobelESPN) September 17, 2017