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Phoenix Open report

More heartbreak for Finau as Simpson snatches Scottsdale crown

Tony Finau's seemingly never-ending wait for another PGA Tour title goes on as Webb Simpson's stunning finish seals the deal in Phoenix
 

Phoenix Open report: What happened at TPC Scottsdale?

Webb Simpson snatched victory from the grasp of Tony Finau as he birdied his final two holes to finish on 17-under and force a play-off.

Simpson’s first win since the 2018 Players Championship saw him produce a final round packed full of perfect putts which we’ve become used to seeing from the 2012 US Open champion.

The American holed two virtually identical putts at the 18th in regular play and the play-off and as the TV cameras showed, they were two of the purest putts you’ll ever see.

He originally overturned the one-shot deficit thanks to a birdie at 10 but a fightback from Finau and a sloppy bogey at 15 saw him two behind with two to play.

But Simpson then made clutch birdies at 17 and 18 to send the contest into overtime.

Just one hole was needed to settle the duel as Simpson produced a carbon copy of his birdie on 18 in regular play while Finau drove his ball into a bunker down the left.

Despite Finau finding the putting surface and leaving a good look at birdie, he was unable to convert and this left the stage clear for Simpson to claim glory.

This is the second time in as many seasons that Finau has lost in a play-off on the PGA Tour and his title drought now spans more than 1,400 days – almost four years. For Simpson he is now 2-5 in extra time.

Phoenix Open report: What the winner said

Phoenix Open report: Talking points

Several golfers paid tribute throughout the week to former Lakers star Kobe Bryant who was killed in a helicopter crash along with his daughter and seven others in January.

Finau and Justin Thomas were among those who showed their appreciation by sporting Bryant basketball jerseys on the par-3 16th and using Bryant-inspired headcovers among other things.

The PGA Tour also honoured him on Sunday by placing the pin at the 16th 24 paces on and 8 from the left. During his illustrious career with the Lakers Bryant wore both numbers while sporting the gold and purple colours. In addition to the pin placement, the 16th flag featured the two numbers on opposite sides.

Elsewhere Denny McCarthy equalled a record that goes back to Luke Donald and 2003 with his heroics at the 16th. To find out more click on the full story here

**

Harold Varner III is has become a pretty consistent performer on the PGA Tour and that was reflected in his play this week despite missing the cut.

The American broke a strange tour record in his first two rounds and we’ve got the full story.

most consecutive pars

Joe Hughes

Tour editor covering men's golf, women's golf and anything else that involves the word golf, really. The talk is far better than the game, but the work has begun to change that.

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