Justin Thomas triumphs in the tight Players Championship, while Lee Westwood is left heartbroken.
With his triumph at the Players Championship on Sunday, Justin Thomas made history.
On Sunday, Justin Thomas overcame a three-shot deficit to overnight leader Lee Westwood to win his first Players Championship championship. After carding a bogey-free round of 68, Westwood appeared to be on his way to winning his first PGA Tour victory in 11 years.
Thomas, on the other hand, shot a stunning eight-under-par 64 to put himself in contention.
Despite being in fantastic shape all week, Westwood was still the favorite entering into Sunday’s final round.
And the 47-year-old got off to a great start with a birdie-three on the first hole, only to drop to 13-under for the tournament on the second hole.
Two more bogeys followed on holes four and eight, but he was still in contention.
Thomas had gotten off to a sluggish start in his final round, and a bogey on the eighth hole appeared to be putting him in jeopardy.
But between holes nine and twelve, the world No. 3 tore up the leaderboard with some mesmerizing play.
In that stretch, Thomas went five-under par, putting him in sole possession of the lead.
Westwood refused to go away, carding a huge birdie on the 14th to tie Thomas at the top of the leaderboard.
However, the 27-year-old held his nerve to hole a birdie on the par-five 16th hole, effectively securing his first Players Championship triumph.
Thomas was composed when he returned to the clubhouse, while Westwood was in the final group.
However, as the Englishman missed an improbable eagle on the 18th hole, Thomas realized he’d done his job and was overjoyed with his performance.
“It’s definitely harder now than it was when there weren’t fans here, and I’m so glad they’re back, and I’m so thrilled to be a Players champion,” he said.
“Today, I battled so hard and kept so patient. From tee to green, that was definitely one of the best rounds of my life.
“I had complete control of the ball, but I wasn’t holing anything, so I kept my cool.”
When Thomas was questioned about his grandfather, who passed away lately, he broke down in tears.
Thomas choked back tears as he replied, “I wish I could talk to him right now.”