Friday, March 1, 2024

LIV Golf League: Dustin Johnson takes Las Vegas title after seeing off Jon Rahm and Bryson DeChambeau -Dlight News

Dustin Johnson won LIV Golf Las Vegas on Saturday in windy and chilly conditions for his third victory on the tour.

Johnson pulled ahead with a birdie at the 17th and made a closing par to edge Peter Uihlein and Talor Gooch by a stroke.

The American shot a one-under 69 to finish 12 under at Las Vegas Country Club, breaking out of a late six-way tie on another day with the temperature barely climbing above 10 degrees celsius in the shadow of the Super Bowl.

Johnson opened with a birdie on the par-five first, then dropped back with bogeys at six, nine and 11.

“Tough day. Got off to a little bit of a rocky start,” Johnson said. “I was hitting really good shots, they were just ending up in poor spots. I was hitting the shots I wanted to, I just was not playing the wind right.”

The two-time major champion rallied with birdies at 13, 15 and 17 – holing a 12-footer on the par-4 17th – and made the par save on the 18th for the victory, hitting to 12 feet from the rough and two-putting.

“I was struggling with the putter a lot and then this year the first two events I’ve putted quite nicely, just making all the putts I need to make,” Johnson said. “Like the one on 17, obviously, was a clutch putt that I needed to make there if I wanted to take a one-shot lead.”

Captain Dustin Johnson of 4Aces GC lines up a putt on the eighth green during the final round of the LIV Golf Las Vegas at the Las Vegas Country Club on Saturday, February 10, 2024 in Las Vegas, United States. (Photo by Scott Taetsch/LIV Golf via AP)
Johnson made a crucial birdie at the 17th hole

Gooch shot a 67, and Uihlein finished with a 68.

Gooch lost three strokes in two holes with a bogey at the ninth and a double bogey at the 10th, then birdied 14, 16 and 17 and 1.

“I actually didn’t hit it that great today, but I made a few putts out there, so the putter got hot at the right time,” Gooch said.

Uihlein bogeyed 16 and birdied 17.

“I hit it all over the shop,” Uihlein said. “It was hard. It was a grind. Putter bailed me out a lot. Short game bailed me out.”

The 39-year-old Johnson has won in each of LIV’s first three seasons, taking playoffs in Boston in September 2022 and Tulsa, Oklahoma, last May. He won 24 times on the PGA Tour.

“The game is feeling in really good form for this early in the year, and so I’m excited for the rest of the year,” Johnson said. “Obviously, got a big stretch coming up with Saudi, Hong Kong, come back, Doral and then the Masters.”

Matthew Wolff was 10 under after a 69. Graeme McDowell (65), Paul Casey (68) and Jason Kokrak (69) were nine under, and Jon Rahm (71) was eighth at eight under in his second LIV start.

Bryson DeChambeau, tied for the second-round lead with Johnson after both shot 62 on Friday, had a 74 to drop into a tie for ninth at seven under.

In the team competition. Gooch, Kokrak and McDowell led Brooks Koepka-captained Smash GC to a seven-stroke victory over Johnson’s 4Aces GC.

The tournament was scheduled for a Saturday finish to avoid clashing with the Super Bowl, taking place in the same city on Sunday.

Watch Super Bowl LVIII from Las Vegas live on Sky Sports on Sunday February 11, with build-up from 10pm ahead of kick-off at 11.30pm; Stream the NFL and more with NOW.

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