Late birdie blitz sees Zach Johnson to victory in Hawaii
Published 07/01/2014 | 08:36
A determined final-day push saw Zach Johnson burst through the leading pack to clinch the Hyundai Tournament of Champions title by a stroke from rising star Jordan Spieth in Hawaii.
The 2007 Masters winner carded 74 on Sunday to let his three-shot lead slip away, but a clinical round of 66 that included seven birdies saw him push 20-year-old Spieth, defending champion Dustin Johnson and Webb Simpson aside when it mattered.
Spieth, who would have forced a play-off with the eventual winner had he chipped in on the 18th at Kapalua, found four birdies in his four-under-par round of 69 and had reached the turn with a one-shot lead over both Zach Johnson and 2013 PGA Championship winner Jason Dufner.
With a score of 19 under for the event, it was an 11th PGA Tour victory for Zach Johnson, who beat Tiger Woods in a play-off to win the Northwestern Mutual World Challenge last month and who tackles the Sony Open later this week.
Dustin Johnson, meanwhile, appeared stricken by the fate that had befallen his namesake on the third day. Five bogeys cancelled out five birdies as he signed for 73 on Monday to finish 14 under for the tournament.
Simpson remained in contention and finished only two shots shy of the victorious Johnson - he tied for third place with Kevin Streelman after the Illinois player hit a six-under-par 67 that included four consecutive birdies on the back nine.
Dufner finished on 15 under for the tournament and took his share of sixth place alongside Billy Horschel, Adam Scott and Dustin Johnson.
Ryan Moore completed the top 10 after holing birdies on 15, 16 and 17 to score 69 on the day.