Golf: Taylor wins Phoenix Open after final effort

Henry

There are few things that can hold a candle to the momentum that comes with a finish, especially in golf.

Canadian Nick Taylor showed it on Sunday night (South African time) at TPC Scottsdale in Arizona, California when he won the Phoenix Open on the second playoff hole after scoring five birdies over his last six holes.

It was Taylor’s fifth win in the series after last year he became the first Canadian player in 69 years to win the Canadian Open.

Taylor and American Charley Hoffmann both finished on 263 shots (-21) in the tournament, which was occasionally interrupted by rain. Taylor sealed his victory with a birdie on the second playoff hole after he and Hoffman both birdied the first playoff hole.

Taylor was the leader after the third round, which could only be completed on Sunday morning due to poor weather conditions.

He started the fourth round calmly and could only score one birdie over the first nine holes.

But he caught fire and made three birdies over the last four holes to force the playoff with Hoffmann. He followed that up with two more birdies in the playoff.

Scottie Scheffler, the world’s top ranked player, was also red hot over the last few holes as he reeled off five consecutive birdies to finish third.

South Africa’s Christiaan Bezuidenhout finished in 28th position on 276 shots (-8) with Garrick Higgo on 279 (-5).

* In the Qatar Masters tournament played at the Doha Country Club, Japan’s Rikuya Hoshino won by one shot after completing the fourth and final round in 68 shots to finish at 274 (-14).

Hoshino’s score was one stroke better than that of Ugo Coussaud (France) who finished on 275 (-13), with Scot Scott Jamieson third on 276 (-12) and England’s Tom McKibbin fourth on 277 (-11 ).

Ockie Strydom and Zander Lombard both finished in 16th place on 282 shots (-6), with Jayden Schaper on 283, Hennie du Plessis and Jacques Kruyswijk together on 284, Jaco Prinsloo on 285 and Louis de Jager on 287.

* On the Royal Cape course in Cape Town, Swede Mikael Lindberg scored a birdie on the second playoff hole to eliminate South Africa’s Ryan van Velzen.

Lindberg’s closing effort in the fourth round resulted in two birdies on the 16th and 17th holes, which saw him finish with Van Velzen on 267 strokes.

South Africa’s Louis Albertse was third on 273, followed by his South African compatriots JC Ritchie, Rupert Kaminski, Toto Thimba (jr.), Shaun Norris as well as Lars van Meijel (Netherlands), Robin Sciot-Siegrist (France) and the Denmark Rasmus Norgaard-Petersen together sixth on 275.

Lindberg is the second Swede to win the Cape Town Open after his compatriot Anton Karlsson was also on the winning side in 2020.

* In the Kenya Open for women, which is part of the European series, South Africa’s Cara Gorlei and Lee-Anne Pace (both 290, -2) did well in the final round and finished 11th together.

The tournament was won by Shannon Tan of Singapore who finished on 280 shots (-12), with Alessandra Fanali of Italy second on 284 (-8) and Ana Pelaez of Spain, Chiara Tamburlini (Switzerland), Manon de Roey (Belgium) , Alice Hewson (England) and Nataliya Guseva (unattached) joint third on 288 shots (-4).