Sport Recaps

The Northern Trust: Recap

Tony Finau has become the 14th consecutive player to come from behind on the final day of a PGA tour event to claim victory at the Northern Trust at Liberty National Golf Club.

Northern Trust Final leaderboard
C Smith (Aus), T Finau (US); -18 Rahm (Spa) -15 A Noren (Swe), T Hoge (US), J Thomas (US); -14 E van Rooyen (SA)
Selected others: -11 X Schauffele (US); -9 L Westwood (Eng); -8 B DeChambeau (US), B Koepka (US), I Poulter (Eng); -7 R McIlroy (NI), H Matsuyama (Jpn), V Hovland (Nor), +1 J Spieth (US)

Tony Finau breaks losing streak

Finau last held up a winners trophy in 2016 after winning his first PGA Tour win at the Peurto Rico Open. 

Only 1,975 days later, he picks up his second win after 40 top-10 finishes and eight 2nd place finishes. He Is now a part of the Peurto Rico curse.

Finau was two shots off the lead after the 3rd round on Saturday, known as moving day. 

Jon Rahm and Cameron Smith, who broke the course record by going round in 60 shots, were tied at the top of the leaderboard. 

Unfortunately for the players, the golf course was affected by a tropical storm warning at the end of day 3. 

The final round had to be postponed to Monday because of Hurricane Henri and even forced the players to tee-off four hours later than planned.  

After the front nine, Rahm was two shots ahead of Smith, and three in front of Finau. It seemed like it was going to be a battle between the Finau, Smith and Rahm, which it proved to be. 

Finau started to play some incredible shots to go birdie-eagle-birdie through 13, 14 and 15 before adding another birdie on the 17th to finish 20 shots under par. 

Back-to-back birdies on 16 and 17 made sure Smith would join the American in yet another tour event playoff, while Rahm faded away after a scrappy finish. 

Another Playoff

The Northern Trust playoff was an anti-climactic affair when Cameron Smith hit his tee-shot way out of bounds and had to reload again, taking three off the tee. Finau had already landed safely in the fairway prior to the Australian hitting his shot. 

No surprises that a solid par was good enough for Tony Finau to win the event on the first playoff hole to lead the FedEx Cup standings.

What does the result mean for the FedEx Cup? 

(FedEx Cup standing stated in parenthesis)

Tony Finau’s victory has given him a 585 point lead over Jon Rahm in second, with Cameron Smith in third, a further 24 points in arrears. 

The top of the leaderboard isn’t too important for now, which is not what can be said for the bottom half. 

The top 125 players that entered the Northern Trust will now be cut down to 70 for the second FedEx Cup event – BMW Championship.

The reduction in the field has ended the season for Englishmen Matt Fitzpatrick (73), Tyrell Hatton (74) and Ian Poulter (77) – both Fitzpatrick and Hatton were in the top 70 before the tournament. 

The veteran trio of Bubba Watson (81), Adam Scott (90) and Matt Kuchar (122) have also been eliminated after missing the cut at the Liberty National GC. 

The biggest climber is American Tom Hoge (48) who went up 60 places after finishing in tied fourth. 

Alex Noren (43), Erik Van Rooyen (45), Harold Varner III (56), Keith Mitchell (63) and Harry Higgs (69) were the only other players to break into the top 70 with a good result. 

The final spot for the BMW Championship went to Phil Mickelson (70).

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