Jon Rahm: Memorial Tournament winner and golf's new world No 1
Jon Rahm: Memorial Tournament winner and golf's new world No 1

Jon Rahm: Spanish golfer new world number one after securing PGA Tour Memorial Tournament title


A review of the action at the Memorial Tournament in Ohio, USA.


Leaderboard

-9 Rahm

-6 Palmer

-5 Fitzpatrick

-4 Wallace, Day

-3 Hughes, Norlander

-2 Finau


Final round report

Jon Rahm will move to world No 1 for the first time after surviving a back-nine wobble to claim a three-stroke victory after a dramatic final day at the Memorial Tournament.

The Spaniard saw an eight-shot advantage cut to three in the space of five holes during a thrilling Sunday at Muirfield Village, with the 25-year-old also receiving a two-shot penalty post-round for his ball moving before an incredible chip-in at the par-three 16th.

Jon Rahm: In action on the 18th green the Memorial Tournament in Ohio, USA
Jon Rahm: In action on the 18th green the Memorial Tournament in Ohio, USA

Rahm eventually signed for a three-over 75 to end the week on nine under and three clear of playing partner Ryan Palmer, with a fourth PGA Tour title enough to leapfrog Rory McIlroy at the top of the world rankings and see him become the first Spanish No 1 since Seve Ballesteros.

Starting the day with a four-shot lead, Rahm opened with four-straight pars before play was halted for nearly 50 minutes due to the threat of lightning on another hot and humid day in Ohio.

Rahm rolled in an eight-footer at the fifth and added a two-putt birdie at the seventh, which extended his lead to eight strokes at the turn after Palmer bogeyed the sixth and eighth.

A wayward drive at the tenth resulted in a first bogey of the day for Rahm, who then found water off the next tee on his way to a double-bogey seven, as Palmer converted a 12-foot birdie at the 12th to cut the lead to four.

Palmer moved a stroke closer with a par at the 14th, as Rahm splashed out of the sand to six feet and missed his par-save, before the pair both failed to take advantage at the par-five next.

Rahm produced the shot of the day after going long of the green at the par-three 16th as he holed his pitch from the rough, only for the birdie to be turned into a bogey post-round after the PGA Tour issued a two-shot penalty for his ball moving before the shot.

The lead increased further when Palmer three-putted the 17th, including one from three feet for par, before Rahm closed out his win with a close-range putt on the final green.

Matt Fitzpatrick posted a round-of-the-day 68 to end the week on five under and in third ahead of Matt Wallace and former world No 1 Jason Day, with just nine players ending the week under par.

Tony Finau, who held a three-shot lead mid-way throughout the third round, slipped to eighth after a final-round 78, while Patrick Reed moved inside the top-10 despite dropping four shots over his final four holes.

Rory McIlroy carded a six-under 78 to finish in the group tied-32nd that also includes Danny Willett, who double-bogeyed the last for a ten-over 82, with Tiger Woods a further shot back on six over and tied-40th.


Round three report

Rahm and McIlroy line up putts in Mexico
Jon Rahm and Rory McIlroy

Jon Rahm will become world number one for the first time on Monday - if he converts a four-shot lead to win the Memorial Tournament.

The Spaniard produced a magnificent round of 68 on Saturday, one of just two players to break 70 on a testing afternoon at Muirfield Village, and it was enough to catapult him to a clear advantage.

Tony Finau had been in front by three after a 50-foot birdie at the 10th was followed by a birdie at the 11th, but double-bogeys at the 12th and 17th holes saw him fall into a share of second with Ryan Palmer.

Former Masters champion Danny Willett rallied well to move into fourth, but he's six shots adrift of the leader, who will take over from Rory McIlroy at the top of the world rankings if he wins.

Rahm played beautifully throughout, for all that he was fortunate to avoid disaster at the fifth when his ball came to rest just short of water.

An outward-nine 36 could and perhaps should have been a shot or two better, but he made up for it with birdies at the 13th, 14th, 15th and 16th, latterly from outside of 20 feet, to surge to the top of the leaderboard.

Rahm's climb began just as Finau's descent did, the American taking five at the par-three 12th after missing the green, and bogeying the 14th having found water off the tee.

Finau responded with a birdie at the 15th, but disaster struck at the 17th where he eventually had to hole a five-foot putt to drop just two shots.

That left him with four to make up on Rahm, whose biggest challenge on Sunday may be the spectre of completing his ascent to the top of the sport - not to mention the forecast winds, which could get up to 25mph.

On Saturday's evidence, a slightly mental distraction and more difficult conditions won't be enough to stop him.


Round two report

Tiger Woods
Tiger Woods

Tiger Woods scraped into the weekend right on the cut line at the Memorial Tournament after struggling with back problems.

The 15-time major winner, who has had numerous operations to rectify a long-term issue, struggled to a four-over 76 on Friday but as the course played more difficult for the later starters his three-over total was just enough to keep him in the event.

It left him 12 shots off the lead set by fellow Americans Ryan Palmer and Tony Finau but of greater concern to the 44-year-old was his physical difficulties in his first event back since February.

"I wasn't quite moving as well as I'd like and couldn't quite turn back and couldn't quite clear. It was a bit of a struggle," the reigning Masters champion, who would have been out of the tournament had it not been for two birdies and a par in his final three holes, said in his post-round interview.

"It started during the warm-up. It wasn't quite as good as I'd like, and it is what it is.

"It's going to happen more times than not. Ageing is not fun. Early on in my career I thought it was fantastic because I was getting better and better and better, and now I'm just trying to hold on."

Palmer (68) and Finau (69) hold a one-stroke lead over Spain's Jon Rahm, with an impressive 66 from Danny Willett lifting him to joint-eighth on four under, two ahead of world number one Rory McIlroy after his erratic level-par 72 which contained an eagle, four birdies, four bogeys and a double bogey seven.

The in-form Bryson DeChambeau was to suffer greater problems, however, after he crashed out of the tournament on five over having signed for a 76 which included a quintuple bogey 10.

Level par for his round through 14 holes he pulled his drive at the 15th into water, hit his next two shots out of bounds - arguing with two officials his fifth shot had not transgressed as it was up against a fence post - and eventually two-putted from 25 feet for double figures.


Round one report

Tony Finau mixed three birdies and two bogeys in an uneven opening nine in Ohio, but finished strong to top the leaderboard with a round of 66.

The American, tipped by Ben Coley at 60/1 pre-tournament, leads by one shot after the first round of the Memorial Tournament in Dublin on six under and was helped by picking up shots on seven of the last 10 holes.

Ryan Palmer is the best of the rest, his bogey-free round 67 good enough for second ahead of Brendan Steele and Gary Woodland who are tied for third on four under.

A lot of the day's attention was on Tiger Woods, who was playing his first Tour event for five months and he carded a one-under 71 for a share of 18th with Phil Casey and Vijay Singh among others.

Jordan Spieth and Rory McIlroy are both tied for eighth on two under after their rounds of 70, Justin Thomas toiled to a 74, Bryson DeChambeau hit a one-over 73 and Brooks Koepka scored a par 72.



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