Inzai, Japan – Hideki Matsuyama fulfilled a lifetime ambition of profitable a PGA Tour occasion on house turf in Japan when he eagled the 72nd gap to cap an imposing Zozo Championship victory on Sunday.
The US Masters champion sealed victory with the shot of the week, a shocking five-wood from 250 yards to arrange an eagle three at par-five 18th on the Accordia Golf Narashino Country Club, exterior Tokyo.
Matsuyama drained the 15-foot putt to an ecstatic roar from the 5,000 adoring followers surrounding the inexperienced and punched the air as he accomplished an impressive final-round 65 for a five-shot victory over American Cameron Tringale.
“It was one of my biggest goals to win in front of the Japanese fans here in this country. So happy that I was able to accomplish that,” stated Matsuyama, who completed on 15-under par with a 265 complete.
“A factor that was going for me was the fans rooting for me and they were behind me, so I’m glad that I was able to convert the energy from the crowd. I’m thrilled.”
Eagle on 18 to win by FIVE.
— PGA TOUR (@PGATOUR) October 24, 2021
For Matsuyama, Japan’s first male main winner, it was his seventh PGA Tour triumph and made up for the massive disappointment of failing to win a medal in his house Olympics this summer time.
The Japanese primary had discovered it onerous to include his anguish after shedding out in a seven-way playoff for Tokyo 2020 bronze after placing himself below immense strain on the Tokyo Games.
He admitted to being tense once more on Sunday as he fought again from a shot down on the tenth, saying he did not loosen up till “that second shot there” on the remaining gap.
Matsuyama had pushed Tiger Woods all the best way on the inaugural Zozo Championship at Narashino Country Club in 2019 because the 15-time main winner bagged a record-equalling 82nd PGA Tour win.
Matsuyama promised his followers that he would come again subsequent year and win.
He was pretty much as good as his phrase, though it took 12 months longer than anticipated because the event shifted to California final year due to the coronavirus.
“In 2019, Tiger won the Masters and went on to win the Zozo Championship, so I’m glad that I was able to emulate that,” stated Matsuyama.
– ‘Storybook’ end –
Ahead of Tringale by a stroke after the third spherical, Matsuyama prolonged his lead by draining a 30-foot putt for eagle on the sixth gap to get to 12-under.
He gave a shot again on the troublesome eighth, permitting Tringale to maneuver right into a tie on the high of the leaderboard along with his second birdie of the day on the ninth.
The 34-year-old American, searching for his maiden PGA Tour win 12 years after turning skilled, adopted with one other on the par-four tenth to take the lead for the primary time because the event became a back-nine duel between the pair.
Matsuyama stepped up a gear and seized again management with an outstanding run of three birdies in 5 holes beginning with a left-to-right 30-footer on the eleventh.
A wonderfully judged downhill 15-foot putt on the brief thirteenth nosed him in entrance then the most effective of the bunch, a easily holed 31-foot putt on the fifteenth, gave Matsuyama a two-shot cushion that was nonetheless intact because the pair stood on the 18th tee.
Tringale threw any remaining likelihood away as he discovered deep tough behind timber out to the fitting.
The fearless Matsuyama eschewed the possibility to play secure and lay-up along with his opponent in bother, as an alternative pulling out his five-wood and drilling the shot of the event to clinch the $1,791,000 winner’s cheque.
“Yeah, really cool for him,” stated a gracious Tringale, whose bogey dropped him right into a tie for second at 10-under par with fellow American Brendan Steele.
“To really slam the door and hit an incredible second shot and hole the putt, it was storybook.”