Rory McIlroy wins Tour Championship, FedEx Cup title, $18 million – The Washington Post

Rory McIlroy wins Tour Championship, FedEx Cup title, $18 million - The Washington Post

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ATLANTA – A PGA Tour season of worry ended with a burst of heat here early Sunday evening, freeing everyone involved to sleep after the last few months doubled as one strange slog.

It ended in a dying swell with dying chants of “Ror-eee! Ror-eee!” across East Lake Golf Club — and with freshman three-time Tour Championship and FedEx Cup winner and PGA Tour champion Rory McIlroy drawing a rousing rally while also saying of the season: “I hate what it’s done to the game of golf. I hate it. I really do.”

Sunday brought noise and commotion. After months of grueling fatigue with the serial poaching of players of the Arabia Saudi-sponsored LIV Golf Invitational Series and from some player waving after being asked about that lavish organization – and from some of the same players then defecting though – the events on Sunday in the old PGA Tour managed to bring up an old topic: golf.

The golf course moved when McIlroy swallowed a six-shot deficit to No. 1 Scottie Scheffler inside the first seven holes and then passed Scheffler to win all the baubles, including the only $18 million bonus that comes from this lower-money tour. In some stuff that qualified as pretty tight, McIlroy and Sungjae Im shot 66s to Scheffler’s 73, leaving McIlroy at 21 under par and the other two at 20 under after a week that started with Scheffler six shots ahead of the other two in the multi-week wobble. scoring system

“Honestly, I didn’t really give myself much of a chance to get going in the fourth round,” McIlroy said, touting. Masters champion Scheffler as the undisputed player of the year and saying, “I think he deserves this maybe more than I deserve it.”

This thing went to the loudest voice on the PGA Tour during the entire slogand so he said, “It will be hard for me to stomach going to Wentworth [in England] in a few weeks and seeing 18 [LIV players at the DP World Tour’s flagship event]. That just doesn’t sit well with me. So, yes, I feel strongly. I believe what I’m saying are the right things, and I think when you believe what you’re saying are the right things, you’re happy to put your neck on the line.”

LIV Golf is joining its players in a lawsuit, intensifying a feud with the PGA Tour

That said, the weekend could turn to the weekdays and the LIV games – the supposed restart of which could defect next to the exhibition-style series, which has already captured 10 of the current top 50, although zero of the top 10. Multiple. reports from Saturday linked the world number 2 player, British Open champion Cameron Smith of Australia, along with players ranked 18th (Joaquin Niemann), 44th (Harold Varner III), 53rd (Cameron Tringale), 63rd (Marc Leishman) and 93rd (Anirban Lahiri).

Smith, 29, topped that list, and he played through the 87-degree swell here, finishing 20th out of 29 contestants. He arrived at the No. 18 outing with Billy Horschel, and they went out to limited attention and limited reaction except for the usual lone voice shouting, “Woo!” Then Horschel spoke about a phenomenon rarely mentioned: guys who will be missed. Turns out there might be a few.

So Horschel played No. 18 trying to shed a tinge of sadness as he figured it might be the last hole he plays — other than majors, perhaps — with his friend and fellow Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla. resident. “I think there are guys that are missing guys, maybe,” Horschel said. “You know, I miss Ian Poulter. … He’s a guy that I enjoyed being around. He’s a guy that I enjoyed playing with.”

However: “If Cam goes, he’ll be the one I’ll miss the most.”

As he spoke a week after being announced PGA Tour is changing that followed a meeting of 23 PGA Tour players in Delaware, golf was roaring out there. It started in the morning, with the wrap-up of the weather-delayed third round, where Scheffler birdied four of his remaining six holes to zoom into that six-shot lead. Then there was a break before the fourth round, so Scheffler and McIlroy and Jon Rahm and others had lunch together.

“We talked about the restaurants in Dubai,” McIlroy said, soon adding, “I don’t know, I mean, anything but the golf and the money.”

The fourth round began two hours after the third round ended, and the tilt began moments after the fourth round began. McIlroy bogeyed No. 1, but so did playing partner Scheffler, three-putting after leaving his first putt at six feet. Soon: “He hit a tee shot on the fourth that just didn’t seem like a Scottie Scheffler drive,” McIlroy said.

“For whatever reason, my swing wasn’t where it was the first few days of the week,” Scheffler would say, his 73 built with four bogeys and just one birdie.

PGA Tour is making bold changes aimed at curbing the threat of LIV Golf

When they got to No. 8, they were tied, and in the middle of the back nine, I elbowed right there between them, all in one shot. Then came McIlroy’s birdie streak down the fairway to the cup from 30 feet on the par-3 No. 15, tying him with Scheffler again, and then came No. 16, which would decide matters between the two. Both played carnival golf throughout the hole to get tough pars, McIlroy chipping in from a bad spot behind the green and chipping one off the club, but with McIlroy making his from seven feet and Scheffler missing his from nine.

This became the first time all week that Scheffler trailed, 70 holes in. Soon everyone paired up, and they hugged on No. 18, and McIlroy hardly knew what to say because Scheffler had been so great for so long this year – that, too, a mix. Soon McIlroy told the assembled crowd: “I believe in the game of golf. I believe in this tour, especially. I believe in the players on this tour. It’s the greatest place in the world to play golf, bar none, and I’ve played everywhere.”

And soon even Scheffler said, “Playing professional golf for a living is such a gift. To me, I don’t play golf for money. I play to win tournaments, and I play to have fun and do my best and see where the game can take me . Today the money definitely didn’t creep into my mind. I wanted to win the season-long title. I had a really great year, and I wanted to finish it off with a win here, and unfortunately I couldn’t do that. But at the end of the day, it’s such a gift to be out here playing golf for money, and I can’t — I’m so grateful to be out here.”

That ended one day – and a bit of a season.

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