Wednesday, 14 November, 2018

Si Woo Kim becomes youngest winner of Players Championship

Frederick Owens | 22 May, 2017, 17:46

Kim Si Woo might have become the youngest ever victor of the Players Championship, but the 21-year-old from Seoul won't be receiving too much special treatment back in South Korea.

"Korean female golfers are doing so well in the LPGA and I wanted to show that male golfers also have what it takes to play competitively in the USA tour", said Kim, who has moved up to 28th in the ranking from 75th as of Sunday.

The world's top 10 players - Scott barely missed the cut, entering the week at No. 11.

PGA TOURTHE PLAYERS CHAMPIONSHIPSite: Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla.

Liam Glynn, BoyleSports spokesperson, said: "Hats off to the Dublin savvy punter who picked Si Woo Kim to win the Players Championship at the massive odds of 500/1".

Kim was almost flawless Sunday on the TPC Sawgrass, closing with a 3-under 69 with no bogeys on his card for a three-shot victory in golf's biggest tournament this side of the major championships.

"I still can't believe I'm the champion, and I'm very excited that I am the youngest champion", Kim said during the post-tournament interview. The largest final-round, come-from-behind victory at the Stadium Course at TPC Sawgrass is five shots by Justin Leonard (1998) and Henrik Stenson (2009).

"I was trying to get my irons in closely, but just couldn't get close enough", Oosthuizen said.

"It's been a great experience for me to win the championship a year ago and today, because of that experience, I could be relieved and I could be very stable and especially I just focused on myself and I didn't try to think about others scores".

The only drama at the end came from Ian Poulter, who was happy just to be here.

Kim said the win a year ago allowed him to remain calm on the golf course.

Poulter was even able to have a laugh at his second shot from the rough at the last, a shank that squirted right and finished in a palmetto bush. He took a penalty drop, and then hit wedge over the trees and almost holed it, tapping in for bogey.

The bogey on the 18th was only the second for Poulter over the final 46 of the tournament.

Kim played bogey-free golf, especially on the back nine of the course. Remarkably, Kim never did.

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But he's gone clean out there today, which is extremely impressive under that pressure.

Si Woo Kim walked up to the 16th green at the TPC Sawgrass and couldn't resist looking across the water at an island.

"If you're on your game and playing well, that the things you do", Oosthuizen said.

"Overall, I'm fairly pleased, but for me I just am going to go away and work on how to solidify my long game". You're not in the tournament, you get in at the last minute, and you play your best golf.

Because he can fill those five years with a litany of starts in golf's biggest tournaments.

He is just the fourth player to win twice on the PGA Tour before 22. "Never once did he look flustered at all". J. B. Holmes and Kyle Stanley were tied for the lead at 9-under.

The Portrush man shot 40 on both nines in a round that didn't contain a birdie as he tumbled 39 places down the field to lie on nine over alongside Martin Kaymer and David Hearn. And then it turned ugly.

Northern Ireland star Rory McIlroy, who fired a 75 to finish on 290, travels to Belfast for an MRI exam Monday to see about nagging back pain that could be related to a rib injury that sidelined him earlier this year.

As for the victor?

Along with the win came a cash prize of $1.89 million. Along with title and money comes a five-year exemption on Tour and three-year exemption to play at the Masters.

The previous youngest victor was Adam Scott who won the 2003 tournament aged 23.

Kim claimed his second win on the PGA Tour in just his second appearance in the tournament after finishing tied for 23rd previous year in his debut at The Players.

European PGA: Matt Wallace completed an unlikely wire-to-wire victory in the Open de Portugal to earn a European Tour card.

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