WGC – HSCB Champions
What a year Rory McIlroy is having. Reigning TOUR player of the year, 2019 FedEx Cup champion, top-10 in 16 of his last 21 starts and now he’s the 2019 HSBC champ. In the “ShotLink” era, only Tiger Woods has posted better numbers. McIlroy’s consistency this year has been phenomenal and “Right now, the game feels pretty simple” – lucky for some!
Defending champion Xander Schauffele didn’t go down without an epic fight. Trailing by 2-shots with 4 to play, he birdied 15 and 18 to card a 66 and force a playoff. On the 1st playoff hole, Schauffele missed the fairway and had to lay up, not so Rory. After piping his drive, McIlroy hit a towering long iron to 25-feet. Schauffele pitched to 12-feet but missed his birdie try leaving Rory McIlroy 2 putts for victory.
A superb 65 on moving day, which included 9 birdies, shot South African Louis Oosthuizen right into contention. Alas, he closed with a 3-under 69 and lost ground finishing 3rd at 17-under. Victor Perez, Matthias Schwab and Abraham Ancer were T4 a further 2-shots back on 15-under. Local hero Haotong Lee opened with a cracking 64 but then couldn’t break par and fell off the leaderboard.
Adam Scott was the best placed Australian, T11 at 11-under – but oh what might have been. He opened 66/69, then on moving day he fired a disappointing 75 and he was done. Veteran Aussie journey-man Scott Hend bounced back after a Thursday 75 to finish 5-under and T28. Cameron Smith had the indignity of marking a 10 on his card at the 8th on Sunday, he finished T60 on plus-4.
The TOUR heads south of the border this week. It’s the Mayakoba Classic at El Camaleon GC – break out the Tequila!
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