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The Players Championship 2018

DATES: May 10-13
SITE: TPC Sawgrass, Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida
PRIZE MONEY: $10,500,000

Round 4 - Webb Simpson triumphs at The Players Championship

May 13, 2018

Webb Simpson capped a phenomenal 54-hole performance with a one-over par 73 to secure a comfortable four-shot victory at The Players Championship.

The former US Open champion held a mammoth seven-shot lead heading into the final round at TPC Sawgrass, and a calm display of sensible golf kept the rest of the field at bay as he finished on 18 under par.

Embed from Getty Images

Impressive final rounds of 67 from Xander Schauffele, Charl Schwartzel and Jimmy Walker granted the trio a share of second place at 14 under-par, with Jason Day and Jason Dufner finishing a stroke further back.

Simpson, who has not won on the PGA Tour since 2013, began his round with six straight pars, before holing out from more than 30 feet at the seventh to make his first birdie of the day.

However, following a poor tee shot that would lead to bogey at the par-3 eighth, Simpson struggled for consistency around the turn, relying on his blistering form with the putter to save par on nine, before dropping another shot on 10.

Despite this set back, the American re-established a five-stroke lead with birdie at the 11th, and with short-lived challenges from the likes of Tiger Woods and Danny Lee fading down the stretch, a third birdie at 16 set up a comfortable finale.

With holes 17 and 18 playing the most difficult on the course on Thursday and Friday respectively, the pressure of maintaining a sizeable lead throughout the course of the afternoon was evident.

"I am exhausted,” Simpson told Sky Sports in the wake of his victory.

“It was a long day. It's probably harder work to be ahead by five or six. I learned from it, I battled through.

"I didn't have my best stuff today, but it was good enough.

"It was tough. I tried to stay busy this morning, enforce that it is one shot at a time. You have a tendency to fast forward and want to get it done, but I had to brace myself."

A nine-under par 63 from Brooks Koepka earlier in the day, which included only the fourth albatross to be recorded at The Players, had set the tone for others to chase Simpson in favourable conditions.

Seeking his third victory at The Players, Tiger Woods showed his intent early and often, complementing a four-under par front-nine with additional birdies at 11 and 12.

However, his challenge faltered after a poor bogey at the 14th and he later found the water at the iconic 17th to finish in disappointing fashion and record a share of 11th place.

Speaking on Sky Sports he said: "I look at how I played the first two days, when I just made the cut, but then I got rolling.

"I really played well this weekend, hit the ball well, and felt good with the putter. I had the speed of the greens and I knew the worm was going to turn.

"I got myself up there. I got within four (of leader Webb Simpson) at one point but I needed four or five more (birdies) coming in.

"I played so well today, even better than yesterday."

Yet despite the presence of a number of major champions in the chasing pack, Simpson proved a class apart from the field all week long.

His outstanding performance on the greens is of particular note, having made drastic changes to that part of his game following the outlawed technique of anchoring the putter in 2016.

With this victory, Simpson becomes only the sixth player to win The Players, a major and a FedExCup Playoffs event.

Pos.
Player
Nat
To Par
R1
R2
R3
R4
Total
1
Webb Simpson
USA
-18
66
63
68
73
270
T2
Charl Schwartzel
RSA
-14
68
66
73
67
274
T2
Jimmy Walker
USA
-14
69
68
70
67
274
T2
Xander Schauffele
USA
-14
68
68
71
67
274

More scores

Round 3 - Simpson heads into Players final with 7-shot lead

May 12, 2018

Webb Simpson matched another tournament record on Saturday with a 54-hole total of 19-under 197 not equalled since Greg Norman in 1994 on his way to a four-shot victory.

Simpson started the day five ahead of three players and wasted no time, playing a birdie at the first then another at the fourth. A bogey at the eighth set him back but he recovered with another birdie at the ninth.

Embed from Getty Images

His second shot at the par-five 11th went 33-yards past the hole to the rear of the greenside bunker but Simpson holed his next shot for an eagle, then sank his shot for birdie at the tricky 17th to move down to 19-under.

  • No player in PGA Tour history has lost a tournament when leading by seven strokes or more.

"There's still 18 holes to play and I've got a lot of work to do," said Simpson. "I know I have tied records but I don't think it matters until I win. All those things that have happened, I'd love to know them if I win tomorrow."

"I'm trying not to dwell there. I'm trying to just look forward, do what I always do on a Saturday night of a golf tournament and get ready."

Current World number 1 Dustin Johnson closed with a 69 to take third place, former number 1 Jason Day fired a 71 to sit two shots behind in a tie for fourth with four other players.

Tiger Woods and Jordan Spieth played 65s to move to 8-under and are tied for ninth place with five others. This is Woods lowest score this year by three shots.

"I finally got off to a good start in birdieing the first couple of holes and I just kept it rolling from here," said Woods.

"I played a lot of good shots out there today and it was nice to see a few putts go in.

"Overall on the whole day I just hit a lot of quality shots and a 65 was probably the highest I could have shot."

Pos.
Player
Nat
To Par
R1
R2
R3
Total
1
Webb Simpson
USA
-19
66
63
68
197
2
Danny Lee
NZL
-12
68
66
70
204
3
Dustin Johnson
USA
-10
66
71
69
206
T4
Charl Schwartzel
RSA
-9
68
66
73
207
T4
Jason Day
AUS
-9
69
67
71
207
T4
Jason Dufner
USA
-9
72
69
66
207
T4
Jimmy Walker
USA
-9
69
68
70
207
T4
Xander Schauffele
USA
-9
68
68
71
207
T9
Harold Varner III
USA
-8
71
67
70
208
T9
Ian Poulter
ENG
-8
70
69
69
208
T9
Jordan Spieth
USA
-8
75
68
65
208
T9
Matt Kuchar
USA
-8
66
71
71
208
T9
Patrick Cantlay
USA
-8
66
68
74
208
T9
Tiger Woods
USA
-8
72
71
65
208
T9
Tommy Fleetwood
ENG
-8
69
71
68
208

Round 2 - Webb Simpson takes 5-shot lead heading into weekend

May 11, 2018

Webb Simpson was on track for a course-record 59 when he lost a ball to the water guarding the 17th green and had to settle for a course-equalling 63 instead and takes a five-shot lead into the weekend.

Simpson's run started with an eagle at the second and continued with nine birdies, including a run of six which also equals a tournament record. His 15-under 129 equals Jason Day's 36-hole tournament record set in 2015.

Embed from Getty Images

"When you're out there competing in a big tournament, you're as focused as can be, but then at a certain point, maybe on 13 today, you start just -- like a kid, just kind of laughing," said Simpson.

"Everything is going in. You feel like no matter what, you're going to make it, and I grew up on an easy golf course, so it reminded me of being back home, shooting low numbers."

"At the same time you're at TPC Sawgrass, so you know that trouble is everywhere, as you guys saw with me on 17.

"But it was just a fun day. And it's rare as a golfer where everything is working well, driving, iron play, chipping and putting, and today everything came together."

Simpson's last Tour success came in 2014 and he has never played lower than 74 in the third round of the Players.

Tiger Woods scraped through with a 1-under 71 having hit just 12 greens in regulation.

"I just never hit it close enough," he said. "The course could have been had today. It's so hot, it's playing short and the greens are receptive."

He has made the cut in seven of the eight events he has played since coming back from back surgery.

Jordan Spieth (68) and Justin Thomas (70) also just made the cut however Rory McIlroy, Hideki Matsuyama, Rickie Fowler and Phil Mickelson all missed it.

Pos.
Player
Nat
To Par
R1
R2
Total
1
Webb Simpson
USA
-15
66
63
129
T2
Charl Schwartzel
RSA
-10
68
66
134
T2
Danny Lee
NZL
-10
68
66
134
T2
Patrick Cantlay
USA
-10
66
68
134
T5
Alexander Noren
SWE
-9
66
69
135
T5
Charles Howell III
USA
-9
68
67
135
T5
Chesson Hadley
USA
-9
66
69
135
T8
Jason Day
AUS
-8
69
67
136
T8
Steve Stricker
USA
-8
67
69
136
T8
Xander Schauffele
USA
-8
68
68
136

Round 1 - Six-way tie in Players opening round

May 10, 2018

Dustin Johnson is part of a six-way tie for the lead at The Players Championship after firing a 6-under par 66, his lowest opening round PGA Tour score in 13 months. Johnson is hoping to retain the World No.1 ranking he has held for 64 weeks and is under pressure from the four players behind him.

"I definitely want to keep the number one title, but I still have three more days of golf, and I'm going to have to play really well if I want to keep the number one spot," he said.

Embed from Getty Images

Also tied for the lead is Matt Kuchar who played birdie-eagle-birdie starting at the 10th to move down to 7-under but dropped down following a bogey on the last hole.

Sergio Garcia, a former Players champion, was at 7-under with two to play after a run of five birdies from the 8th to the 12th but lost a ball in the water after hitting the woodwork that guards the island green on the 17th and finished double-bogey then bogey to join a group of thirteen other players at 68.

Tiger Woods produced a 20-foot eagle par at the 9th but also found the water and closed with a bogey to finish level par.

"I felt like today the way I was hitting the golf ball, especially toward the back nine, that I felt like I should have shot something in the 60s, but didn't do it," Woods said.

His playing partner Phil Mickelson was even par but a run of double-bogey, bogey then two more double-bogeys starting from the 14th left him at 7-over par 79. He blamed fatigue after his struggle for a share of fifth place at last week's Wells Fargo Championship.

"I knew this was going to be an issue," he said. "I said it Sunday at Wells Fargo, I was worried about energy this week, and I just kind of ran out at the end."

Pos.
Player
Nat
To Par
Hole
R1
T1
Alexander Noren
SWE
-6
18
66
T1
Chesson Hadley
USA
-6
18
66
T1
Dustin Johnson
USA
-6
18
66
T1
Matt Kuchar
USA
-6
18
66
T1
Patrick Cantlay
USA
-6
18
66
T1
Webb Simpson
USA
-6
18
66
T7
Andrew Landry
USA
-5
18
67
T7
Jhonattan Vegas
VEN
-5
18
67
T7
Keith Mitchell
USA
-5
18
67
T7
Rory Sabbatini
RSA
-5
18
67
T7
Si-Woo Kim
KOR
-5
18
67
T7
Steve Stricker
USA
-5
18
67

Scores

Pos.
Player
Nat
To Par
R1
R2
R3
R4
Total
1
Webb Simpson
USA
-18
66
63
68
73
270
T2
Charl Schwartzel
RSA
-14
68
66
73
67
274
T2
Jimmy Walker
USA
-14
69
68
70
67
274
T2
Xander Schauffele
USA
-14
68
68
71
67
274
T5
Jason Day
AUS
-13
69
67
71
68
275
T5
Jason Dufner
USA
-13
72
69
66
68
275
T7
Danny Lee
NZL
-12
68
66
70
72
276
T7
Harold Varner III
USA
-12
71
67
70
68
276
T7
Keegan Bradley
USA
-12
69
69
72
66
276
T7
Tommy Fleetwood
ENG
-12
69
71
68
68
276
T11
Adam Scott
AUS
-11
69
68
72
68
277
T11
Brooks Koepka
USA
-11
70
70
74
63
277
T11
Chesson Hadley
USA
-11
66
69
75
67
277
T11
Ian Poulter
ENG
-11
70
69
69
69
277
T11
Justin Thomas
USA
-11
73
70
68
66
277
T11
Tiger Woods
USA
-11
72
71
65
69
277
T17
Alexander Noren
SWE
-10
66
69
77
66
278
T17
Charles Howell III
USA
-10
68
67
74
69
278
T17
Dustin Johnson
USA
-10
66
71
69
72
278
T17
Jamie Lovemark
USA
-10
76
67
68
67
278
T17
Matt Kuchar
USA
-10
66
71
71
70
278
T17
Rafael Cabrera Bello
ESP
-10
71
71
67
69
278
T23
Henrik Stenson
SWE
-9
68
70
71
70
279
T23
Justin Rose
ENG
-9
68
72
73
66
279
T23
Patrick Cantlay
USA
-9
66
68
74
71
279
T23
Richy Werenski
USA
-9
70
71
68
70
279
T23
Ryan Palmer
USA
-9
74
67
69
69
279
T23
Scott Brown
USA
-9
70
71
69
69
279
T23
Steve Stricker
USA
-9
67
69
73
70
279
T30
Byeong-Hun An
KOR
-8
71
70
69
70
280
T30
Chez Reavie
USA
-8
71
71
69
69
280
T30
Cody Gribble
USA
-8
68
71
72
69
280
T30
Grayson Murray
USA
-8
72
68
69
71
280
T30
Kiradech Aphibarnrat
THA
-8
71
71
71
67
280
T30
Rory Sabbatini
RSA
-8
67
71
71
71
280
T30
Ryan Moore
USA
-8
71
70
73
66
280
T37
Billy Horschel
USA
-7
68
70
73
70
281
T37
Bryson DeChambeau
USA
-7
70
67
73
71
281
T37
Emiliano Grillo
ARG
-7
69
71
72
69
281
T37
Nick Watney
USA
-7
70
72
72
67
281
T41
Brice Garnett
USA
-6
69
69
73
71
282
T41
Jhonattan Vegas
VEN
-6
67
72
70
73
282
T41
Jordan Spieth
USA
-6
75
68
65
74
282
T41
Patrick Reed
USA
-6
72
68
70
72
282
T41
Ted Potter Jr.
USA
-6
70
70
72
70
282
T46
Austin Cook
USA
-5
72
70
71
70
283
T46
Beau Hossler
USA
-5
70
69
73
71
283
T46
Branden Grace
RSA
-5
69
71
73
70
283
T46
Cheng Tsung Pan
TPE
-5
68
70
76
69
283
T46
Chris Kirk
USA
-5
70
71
70
72
283
T46
Chris Stroud
USA
-5
70
70
72
71
283
T46
Jason Kokrak
USA
-5
72
69
71
71
283
T46
Kevin Na
USA
-5
69
71
72
71
283
T46
Kevin Tway
USA
-5
70
72
72
69
283
T46
Matthew Fitzpatrick
ENG
-5
72
70
70
71
283
T46
Shane Lowry
IRL
-5
75
68
69
71
283
T57
Adam Hadwin
CAN
-4
72
68
71
73
284
T57
Bubba Watson
USA
-4
68
71
73
72
284
T57
Daniel Berger
USA
-4
74
68
72
70
284
T57
Mackenzie Hughes
CAN
-4
76
67
68
73
284
T57
Martin Laird
SCO
-4
72
71
70
71
284
T57
Tony Finau
USA
-4
70
72
71
71
284
T63
Jon Rahm
ESP
-3
68
70
77
70
285
T63
Marc Leishman
AUS
-3
71
71
67
76
285
T63
Si-Woo Kim
KOR
-3
67
72
74
72
285
66
Tyrone van Aswegen
RSA
-2
74
68
70
74
286
T67
Andrew Landry
USA
-1
67
75
71
74
287
T67
Brandon Harkins
USA
-1
75
68
73
71
287
T67
J. J. Henry
USA
-1
72
71
69
75
287
70
Sergio Garcia
ESP
Par
68
69
75
76
288
71
Ross Fisher
ENG
1
70
73
73
73
289
MDF
Brian Gay
USA
1
72
71
74
-
217
MDF
Lucas Glover
USA
1
68
71
78
-
217
MDF
Tom Hoge
USA
1
70
69
78
-
217
MDF
Ollie Schniederjans
USA
2
68
71
79
-
218
MDF
Zach Johnson
USA
2
71
69
78
-
218
MDF
Keith Mitchell
USA
4
67
75
78
-
220
MDF
Ryan Blaum
USA
4
71
72
77
-
220
MDF
Brendan Steele
USA
6
72
69
81
-
222
MDF
Nick Taylor
CAN
6
69
74
79
-
222
CUT
Alexander Levy
FRA
Par
73
71
-
-
144
CUT
Anirban Lahiri
IND
Par
69
75
-
-
144
CUT
J. J. Spaun
USA
Par
71
73
-
-
144
CUT
John Huh
USA
Par
69
75
-
-
144
CUT
Jonas Blixt
SWE
Par
75
69
-
-
144
CUT
Kevin Chappell
USA
Par
72
72
-
-
144
CUT
Luke List
USA
Par
70
74
-
-
144
CUT
Wesley Bryan
USA
Par
71
73
-
-
144
CUT
James Hahn
USA
1
73
72
-
-
145
CUT
Kevin Streelman
USA
1
70
75
-
-
145
CUT
Kyle Stanley
USA
1
75
70
-
-
145
CUT
Martin Kaymer
GER
1
71
74
-
-
145
CUT
Rickie Fowler
USA
1
74
71
-
-
145
CUT
Robert Garrigus
USA
1
75
70
-
-
145
CUT
Robert Streb
USA
1
73
72
-
-
145
CUT
Rory McIlroy
NIR
1
71
74
-
-
145
CUT
Russell Henley
USA
1
72
73
-
-
145
CUT
Bud Cauley
USA
2
73
73
-
-
146
CUT
Charley Hoffman
USA
2
71
75
-
-
146
CUT
Francesco Molinari
ITA
2
73
73
-
-
146
CUT
Gary Woodland
USA
2
74
72
-
-
146
CUT
Hudson Swafford
USA
2
75
71
-
-
146
CUT
Kelly Kraft
USA
2
74
72
-
-
146
CUT
Pat Perez
USA
2
76
70
-
-
146
CUT
Russell Knox
SCO
2
74
72
-
-
146
CUT
Ryan Armour
USA
2
73
73
-
-
146
CUT
Scott Piercy
USA
2
77
69
-
-
146
CUT
Tyrrell Hatton
ENG
2
75
71
-
-
146
CUT
David Lingmerth
SWE
3
75
72
-
-
147
CUT
J. B. Holmes
USA
3
75
72
-
-
147
CUT
Kevin Kisner
USA
3
77
70
-
-
147
CUT
Meen-Whee Kim
KOR
3
75
72
-
-
147
CUT
Patton Kizzire
USA
3
72
75
-
-
147
CUT
Satoshi Kodaira
JPN
3
74
73
-
-
147
CUT
Stewart Cink
USA
3
75
72
-
-
147
CUT
Trey Mullinax
USA
3
72
75
-
-
147
CUT
Vaughn Taylor
USA
3
72
75
-
-
147
CUT
William McGirt
USA
3
73
74
-
-
147
CUT
Bill Haas
USA
4
74
74
-
-
148
CUT
Blayne Barber
USA
4
76
72
-
-
148
CUT
Chad Campbell
USA
4
74
74
-
-
148
CUT
Harris English
USA
4
77
71
-
-
148
CUT
Hideki Matsuyama
JPN
4
79
69
-
-
148
CUT
Martin Flores
USA
4
80
68
-
-
148
CUT
D. A. Points
USA
5
75
74
-
-
149
CUT
Louis Oosthuizen
RSA
5
78
71
-
-
149
CUT
Patrick Rodgers
USA
5
73
76
-
-
149
CUT
Michael Thompson
USA
6
76
74
-
-
150
CUT
Scott Stallings
USA
6
75
75
-
-
150
CUT
Ben Martin
USA
7
78
73
-
-
151
CUT
Cameron Smith
AUS
7
76
75
-
-
151
CUT
Danny Willett
ENG
7
74
77
-
-
151
CUT
Dominic Bozzelli
USA
7
77
74
-
-
151
CUT
Geoff Ogilvy
AUS
8
78
74
-
-
152
CUT
Phil Mickelson
USA
8
79
73
-
-
152
CUT
Scott McCarron
USA
8
79
73
-
-
152
CUT
Derek Fathauer
USA
9
77
76
-
-
153
CUT
Brandt Snedeker
USA
10
82
72
-
-
154
CUT
Brian Harman
USA
10
74
80
-
-
154
CUT
Michael Kim
KOR
10
78
76
-
-
154
CUT
Rod Pampling
AUS
10
74
80
-
-
154
CUT
Sung-Hoon Kang
KOR
11
78
77
-
-
155
CUT
Haotong Li
CHN
12
76
80
-
-
156
RET
Sean O'Hair
USA
Par
79
-
-
-
79

 




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