Pontevedra Beach-The toughest part for Cameron Smith hasn’t survived over four inches of rain, gusts of 43 mph, and temperatures of 37 degrees Celsius in the last five days.
Nor did he recover after overcoming three consecutive bogies at the end of the front nine and seeing the 18th second shot roll into the lake with a two-shot lead.
None of them. The hardest part of last week for Smith was after winning the Players Championship title 6 under 66 on Monday. This was enough to defeat Anilban Rahiri of Palm Beach Gardens in one shot. At that time, Smith, who lives in Jacksonville, was asked about achieving the greatest achievements of his career in front of his mother Sharon and his sister Mel. A few weeks ago, from my parents’ home in Australia.
Smith became emotional, held back tears, and found it difficult to speak.
“I haven’t seen them for two years,” he said, his voice broke. “It’s really cool that they’re here. My top priority is really to spend time with them and golf has been second in the last few weeks.”
Sharon and Mel were just as emotional, along with Smith’s girlfriend Chanel Naum of Jacksonville.
“Wow,” Sharon said. “can not believe it.”
“I mean a lot for Kam (to win) and to take us all here,” Mel said.
The 28-year-old Smith won the tour for the fifth time, but nothing was bigger (or more profitable) than this. He finds another $ 3.6 million in his account, conquering the field with 46 of the world’s top 50 golfers, and then climbs 4th to 6th in the world rankings.
“I feel that one of these big things is the next step for me,” he said. “I knocked on the door several times.”
Smith broke the door thanks to his putting. He created 38 footers for Birdie to start the final round and finished with 13 1 putts. He first finished the tournament with the strokes he got: putting.
“It trapped me in it,” he said.
Smith took five days to complete due to the weather and appeared at the end of the tournament with a golfer sitting for a full two days during the first two rounds. He took the lead on Monday’s Back Nine and postponed some challenges. At some point, 12 players were within 2 shots of the lead.
Smith finished the tournament with 13 unders (275). Rahiri (69), led by a one-shot entering the final round, has become perhaps the most unlikely winner in tournament history.
“To be honest, I’m amazed at how calm I was,” said Rahiri, who lives at the PGA National. “I was just happy. I was really good at it. I just stuck to my process and routine.”
Acknowledging that he desperately wants to win, 34-year-old Rahiri recalls knowing that the runner-up finish was pretty solid.
“This is a really positive week for me,” he said.
Still, it was Smith’s day. How else would you explain that he started the final round with 5 birdies on his first 6 holes and then with 4 bogies, but recovered with another 4 birdies?
Or, aim to the left of the pin sitting off the water behind the nerve-breaking 17th green and watch it land 4 feet from the hole and not far from the lake.
“If I said I was aiming there, I would be lying,” he said.
Or he put his second shot (struck from pine straw) into water number 18, but is looking at recovering the fourth shot from 59 yards of land, three feet away from the pin. .. Smith saved the bogey and avoided the playoffs.
“Because it was in the straw of the pine, I thought the shot was actually going to be pretty soft. It was really great … and I just rolled off the fairway,” he said.
It left another obstacle to overcome. Rahiri, who ranked 322nd in the world ranking, has never won the PGA Tour. His final victory is the 2015 European Tour.
Rahiri’s ball was 161 yards from the hole after a perfect drive on number 18. Rahiri faced the biggest shot of his life because he needed a birdie to force the playoffs. But a few seconds after hitting the ball, he knew this wasn’t what he wanted.
“I didn’t go through it, and I hung it a little, and it didn’t come back,” Rahiri said. “It was a shame because I couldn’t put myself in a better position.”
The ball landed just before the green, 41 feet from the hole. Smith was signing his scorecard at the time and he had never seen the monitor to see the shot. But when Rahiri’s tip stepped through the hole, Smith was watching as well as his team, family and girlfriend.
At that time, tears came out and the hug seemed to never end.
“It was nice to have a company at home in the rain,” Smith said. “Last week we took a tour of Jackson Building and spent a lot of time hanging out.”
Now he has a nice, new, shiny trophy to show them and the whole country.
Australia’s Cameron Smith wins first Players Championship in front of family
Source link Australia’s Cameron Smith wins first Players Championship in front of family