Tiger Woods may have erased any doubt about playing in the Presidents Cup in Australia as he fired a brilliant six-under 64 to grab the clubhouse lead in the US PGA Tour’s inaugural Zozo Championship in Japan.
Local hero Matt Jones won the Australian Open for the first time on Sunday afternoon, finishing eight strokes under par, and just one ahead of close rivals Jordan Spieth and Adam Scott.
Jones started the day three strokes ahead of the field, with Spieth his closest rival, but couldn’t pull away and instead the title remained a close affair right up until the last moments.
Jones ultimately went two over par on the final day but was still able to clinch the Stonehaven Cup.
“That was very stressful, it wasn’t comfortable out there for me,” Jones said after his victory.
“I’ve watched the Australian Open for many years and just to have my name on that trophy is something I’ll never forget.”
Spieth was Jones’ closest rival but it was Adam Scott and also last year’s runner-up Rod Pampling who showed a remarkable ability to close the gap on the final day, though both fell short in the end.
Pampling recorded a new course record score of 61 – ten under par – on the final day and ultimately finished the tournament on -6, just two strokes short of a win despite having come into the final round at four over par.
Pampling actually shared the lead with Jones for a brief moment when Jones recorded a triple-bogey on the ninth, landing in the water and three-putting to find the hole after his penalty shot.
Adam Scott also lead briefly after finishing the course with a birdie, he recorded 65 for the day but in the end fell short, not quite close enough to the leaders at the start of the final round for his quality performance to give him a win.
Jones recorded a birdie on the 16th hole and than put him back into the sole lead. However there was more tension to come as Spieth had a 15-foot Eagle opportunity on the final hole that could’ve forced a play-off.
Spieth missed, and Jones sank his a short putt to clinch the trophy.