Golf

Casey holds off Oosthuizen to win Valspar Championship

The 41-year-old Englishman stumbled with a bogey on the par-Three 17th gap however two-putted from 22 toes at 18 to change into the primary back-to-back winner of the occasion at Innisbrook Resort’s Copperhead course in Palm Harbour, Florida.

Casey had by no means earlier than defended knowledgeable title and he received for less than the second time in six tries with a 54-hole US PGA lead by firing a closing spherical one-over par 72 to complete 72 holes on eight-under 276.

“At present wasn’t simple nevertheless it felt very completely different since profitable final yr,” Casey stated. “That felt like my first victory. Since then, new confidence. I’ve felt like a very completely different participant.”

Casey edged Tiger Woods and Patrick Reed by a stroke for final yr’s Valspar crown.

Oosthuizen, the 2010 British Open champion, and Kokrak, who didn’t win his first PGA crown after 198 begins over eight seasons, shared second on 277 with two-time Masters winner Bubba Watson and South Korean Im Sung-jae one other stroke adrift.

Casey, who has by no means damaged 70 when main a US PGA occasion after 54 holes, received his solely prior title when main coming into the final spherical on the 2009 Houston Open.

This marks the primary time in seven years that European gamers have received three consecutive US PGA occasions, with Northern Eire’s Rory McIlroy having taken The Gamers Championship final week and Italy’s Francesco Molinari taking the Arnold Palmer Invitational two weeks in the past.

High-ranked Dustin Johnson, one adrift at first, didn’t make a birdie and shot 74 to share sixth with Spain’s Jon Rahm and American Ryan Armour on 279.

The poor spherical snapped Johnson’s run of 14 consecutive rounds within the 60s, the longest such streak of his profession or by any tour participant this season.

Casey opened with a birdie however stumbled early. He discovered a bunker and took bogey at three, then adopted a birdie on the par-5 fifth with bogeys at six after discovering deep tough off the tee and 7 on three putts from 26 toes.

Oosthuizen started with an eagle, holing at 82-foot bunker shot on the par-5 opening gap. He made bogey on the par-5 fifth however birdied the sixth and dropped his strategy to a few toes to birdie the par-5 11th and share the lead at eight-under.

Casey blasted out of a bunker to 2 toes and birdied the par-5 11th to grab a one-shot lead over Oosthuizen and Kokrak, who birdied the par-5 11th and par-Three 13th to hitch the hunt.

Casey could not save par from 14 toes after discovering a bunker on the par-Three 13th, however restored his edge on a birdie on the par-5 14th after dropping his strategy two toes from the cup.

Oosthuizen fell again with a bogey at 16 however Casey, after saving par from deep greenside tough at 16, missed a tense five-footer and made bogey on the par-Three 17th, falling again right into a share of the lead with Kokrak.

Kokrak then missed a nervy eight-foot par putt at 18 and slid again stage with Oosthuizen, leaving Casey needing a par at 18 to win.

Casey’s closing tee shot discovered a bunker proper of the golf green, however he dropped his strategy 22 toes from the cup then rolled his birdie strive inches previous the opening earlier than tapping in for the victory.

Main scores after Sunday’s closing spherical of the PGA Valspar Championship at Palm Harbor, Florida (USA except famous, par 71):

276 – Paul Casey (ENG) 70-66-68-72

277 – Louis Oosthuizen (RSA) 70-72-66-69, Jason Kokrak 69-71-66-71

278 – Bubba Watson 69-71-70-68, Im Sung-jae (KOR) 70-67-71-70

279 – Jon Rahm (ESP) 71-68-72-68, Ryan Armour 70-72-68-69, Dustin Johnson 69-69-67-74

280 – Denny McCarthy 68-74-69-69, Austin Cook dinner 69-67-72-72, Scott Stallings 69-68-70-73, Luke Donald 67-70-70-73

281
– Lucas Glover 72-67-72-70, Invoice Haas 72-70-69-70, Mackenzie Hughes
(CAN) 70-72-68-71, Matt Jones (AUS) 73-68-68-72, Curtis Luck (AUS)
70-68-70-73

282 – Kang Sung (KOR) 71-71-72-68, Vaughn Taylor
74-69-71-68, Rory Sabbatini (SVK) 70-69-73-70, Charley Hoffman
69-74-69-70, Brian Stuard 68-72-69-73, Jim Furyk 69-71-68-74

283 –
Kevin Kisner 67-75-72-69, Julian Etulain (ARG) 69-73-71-70, Zach
Johnson 71-72-70-70, Henrik Stenson (SWE) 70-73-69-71, Russell Knox
(SCO) 67-76-67-73, Nick Taylor (CAN) 71-70-67-75

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