Published: Mon, June 26, 2017
Sport | By Wendy Sparks

Spieth holes bunker shot to win Travelers in playoff

Spieth holes bunker shot to win Travelers in playoff

Jordan Spieth is back in the winner's circle.

Jordan Spieth sank a bunker shot on the first playoff hole Sunday to defeat US compatriot Daniel Berger and win the Travelers Championship for his 10th career US PGA title. He then gave his long-time rival dating back to junior golf days a low five before walking back to stand over about a 60-foot putt he knew damn well he wasn't going to make to force a second playoff hole. He needed an up-and-down just to force sudden death.

Henry's day ended with a bogey one hole later, finding the bunker on 18 after hitting his drive in the rough. My ball striking has been rock solid for a while now. Still, it was quite a lucky break. The Floridian found eight (of 14) fairways and 12 greens in regulation, losing 1.758 strokes approaching-the-green and 2.919 strokes against the field.

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Spieth and Berger finished 72 holes at 12-under.

Defending champion Russell Knox had a poor round, with six bogeys on his first 10 holes. But instead, the ball struck the pin dead solid and disappeared into the earth like a desert rat. Not many guys could hit that bunker shot he hit on 18 [in regulation] after he hit that second shot. Two holes later, his tee shot just skirted the water and he chipped to the middle of the green and made his 16-footer for birdie. That was some good timing, too, and an exciting display of emotion between player and caddy.

Although Berger was probably still stunned from his shocking loss, he still managed to sum up Spieth's unbelievable shot pretty succinctly.

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The crowds were massive, the weather was ideal, and there was electric in the air as Jordan Spieth and Daniel Berger headed into a Sudden Death playoff. Spieth's playing partner Boo Weekley sat one shot further adrift on nine-under with Paul Casey and Patrick Reed.

Spieth holed his chip shot from the bunker at the first extra hole to pick up his 10th PGA title, and at the age of 23, becomes the second youngest player after Tiger Woods, to do so. That sand shot that won the tournament today is an example. It was his first playoff victory since beating Lake Orion's Tom Gillis in 2015 at the John Deere Classic. "It says that, other than that we add a little bit of belief no matter where we go, we don't just say, 'This course isn't for us'".

"We got off to a attractive start coming off that last round at the U.S. Open", Spieth said after the final round. It also inhibits him from "releasing the club" (turning the club face over and letting the club head pass his hands) on his follow through.

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