Scottie Scheffler made it out of a golf tournament so draining that it deserved an X. Rory McIlroy broke the wedge in half. Adam Scott, the best man on the fairways, turned down post-round media duties on the grounds he had “nothing good to say”. Another world elite wandered around the Bay Hill parking lot, claiming to be “looking for a USGA sign”. This is indeed a lot more US Open than a standard Tour stop.
Scheffler wouldn’t really care about the background. The fourth round of 72 secured the Arnold Palmer Invitational one, five under par, over Tyrrell Hatton, Viktor Hovland and Billy Horschel. There are contrasting emotions in it. 69 Hatton is incredible. Hovland doesn’t get any better than plus five over the weekend. “It stings,” Hovland admitted. Horschel watched a 30-foot putt slide on the 72nd green. If it goes in, he will force an additional hole.
Instead, Scheffler celebrated his second win in a month and three starts. Two comfortable putts from 69 feet on the final green emphasized the 25-year-old’s bold touch. Likewise with eight pars and one birdie in the back nine. Scheffler is a real problem.
The subplot relates to how much this brutal battle – caused by its thick roughness, breeze and roasted vegetables – will affect the minds of returning players. “I’m glad I got off that golf course, I’m glad I’m done,” said Gary Woodland, who shared fifth place.
Golfers don’t really want their faith crushed just before the biggest non-major week of the year, at the Players’ Championship. McIlroy, whose temper has taken hold of him on the 12th, admits he is “going beyond” but believes the directional setting must change.
“I feel so drunk,” McIlroy said after 76. “This weekend, it’s been like crazy golf. You just don’t get rewarded for a good shot. I hit a good shot. I swing the club well. I cut well. I put well. But it can drop your confidence whenever the conditions are like this.
“I don’t mind the golf course being a penalty when you miss, but it doesn’t give a great reward. I think that’s where he started to cross the line.”
Horschel and Talor Gooch share a 54-hole lead with six under par. Gooch’s 77 left him in the seventh but there was consolation from a place at this summer’s Open due to his performance at Bay Hill.
Scottie Scheffler survives ‘golf madness’ to win Arnold Palmer Invitational | Golf
Source link Scottie Scheffler survives ‘golf madness’ to win Arnold Palmer Invitational | Golf