Safeway Open report: Stewart Cink claims first title in a decade with two shot win in California

Stewart Cink wins the 2020 Safeway Open in California

PGA Tour veteran Stewart Cink claimed his first tournament since the 2009 Open after shooting 65 to win the Safeway Open in California by two shots.

Latest Leaderboard

-21 Cink

-19 Higgs

-18 Redman, Reavie, Streelman, Stuard

-17 Burns, Ventura

Fourth round report

PGA Tour veteran Stewart Cink put together a stellar final round 65 to win the Safeway Open in California by two shots.

The 47-year-old followed up a third-round 65 with another equally-impressive seven-under on Sunday to finish 21-under for the tournament and secure his first victory since the 2009 Open Championship.

Entering the final round tied for seventh, Cink took little time to continue his surge up the leaderboard as he carded four birdies on the front nine.

His momentum carried over into the back nine, with four more birdies proving enough to overcome a bogey on the 17th and keep him ahead of runner-up Harry Higgs.

Higgs shot a four-under 68 on Sunday to finish the tournament 19 under.

Cink paid tribute to the help he received through the week from his son and caddie Reagan.

He told the Golf Channel: “It’s been a blast. Reagan’s a great kid to be around.

“He knows the game in and out like a PGA Tour player himself and he did a great job keeping me positive and keeping me loose out there and we just had a really great time from the get-go.”

Scotland’s Russell Knox was unable to make a late charge on Sunday, with his two-under 70 not enough to keep him in contention.

Knox entered the final round on 14 under and with a shot at victory, however his good work in picking up three birdies on the front nine was ultimately undone by three bogeys on the back stretch.

England’s Ben Taylor carded a final round 73 to finish tied for 36th.

Third round report

Brian Stuard carded a 66 at the Safeway Open to share top place on a top-heavy scoreboard ahead of the final round in California, while Russell Knox remains in contention in the PGA Tour opener.

Stuard put together three birdies in the front nine and came back in 33, including a birdie on the 18th, to jump seven places on 16 under.

Joining him is countryman James Hahn who carded a 67 and Australian Cameron Percy, while overnight leader Sam Burns scored a par 72 to sit a shot off the lead with Norwegian rookie Kristoffer Ventura and Harry Higgs.

Scotland’s Knox is among a five-strong pack on 14 under after scoring 70 on Saturday, while Emiliano Grillo and Stewart Cink leapt 19 places into tied for seventh after rounds of 65.

Meanwhile England’s Ben Taylor shot a 67 for the second consecutive day to head into the final round three shots back off the lead.

Second round report

Sam Burns overcame an early double bogey to take a two-shot lead into the third round of the Safeway Open in California.

The American entered Friday’s round trailing Scot Russell Knox by a stroke, but his attempt to chase Knox down got off to a disastrous start when he found the water on the 11th.

But after settling for a double bogey, Burns immediately clicked into gear – carding five birdies through the rest of the back nine.

He carried this momentum into the front nine, picking up another four birdies and an eagle – along with one bogey – to post a seven-under 65.

Two strokes back from Burns on 15 under is fellow American Harry Higgs, who shot a closing albatross for a second round of 62.

Knox finished Friday’s round tied for third on 12 under, alongside Australian Cameron Percy and American DJ Trahan.

Meanwhile England’s Ben Taylor shot an eight-under 67 to head into the third round tied for seventeenth.

First round report

Russell Knox has a one-shot lead after shooting a nine-under 63 on day one of the first event of the new PGA Tour season in California.

The Scot, who missed last season’s FedEx Cup play-offs by two spots, had seven birdies and eagled the 550-yard fifth hole before play was suspended due to darkness at the Safeway Open in California.

Australia’s Cameron Percy, who had one of three bogeys on the fifth, joined Americans Sam Burns and Bo Hoag a stroke back with a share of second.

Knox, 35, started slowly after hitting his first tee shot into the rough, but built steadily throughout the day after his first birdie on the fourth hole.

After play, he said: “(I) worked as hard as I ever have the last two weeks before this event, so it’s really nice to see something good happen immediately. I definitely feel like my game is heading in the right direction.”

Open champion Shane Lowry, who said he was looking to make up for a disappointing end to the previous campaign, finished five strokes back with a share of 21st with Scotland’s Martin Laird, while England’s Ben Taylor shot 69 to share 36th.

The tournament takes place in northern California’s Napa while much of the US west coast battles wildfires, with players preparing for next week’s US Open at Winged Foot in New York.

Like what you've read?
Help your friends Know It All by sharing this article to your social media.

Most Read