Published: Вт, Мая 16, 2017
Sport | By Gary Shelton

From Players Championship winner to cattle class


"He's lining up in the middle of the green".

Ian Poulter's tie for second place with Oosthuizen caps a memorable comeback for the Ryder Cup star.

Rafa Cabrera Bello and Kyle Stanley finished in a tie for fourth. His best showing prior to this week was a tenth in his season-starter at the CIMB Classic.

But Si Woo Kim's golf game in the final round of The Players Championship on Sunday was a performance beyond his years and one for the ages. He's basically been playing out here for four years.

Kim became the second South Korean to win the event after KJ Choi in 2011 and he said he hoped his victory would help inspire his countrymen to raise their game.

"K.J. has become a really good model", Kim said.

On a windy day at TPC Sawgrass, Kim was the only player to go bogey free in the final round.

Poulter hit what he described as a shank - "You'd like me to spell it for you?" he jokingly asked after his round of 71 - on the 18th hole, took a penalty drop from a palmetto bush, saw a gap in the trees, and hit wedge through it and onto the green, and he came within inches of making it. No one is ever going to call me a good player. It's nice to close out - it's nice obviously not to compound an error with another one.

Best of the rest: Poulter was 3 under on his round and 9 under for the championship and had gone 39 holes without a bogey before he made his pivotal mistake on the new par-4 12.

He added: "The lucky punter certainly knows their golf and no doubt they will be able to afford plenty of four balls at The K Club after netting a whopping €60,200 from their €200 bet".

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The 41-year-old Englishman, who finished runner-up at the Players Championship last week, will take part in the flagship event at Wentworth, starting on May 25.

Bello made history as the first player to record a double eagle at the par-5 No. 16 in tournament history.

COMEBACK KID: Kim began Sunday just two shots off the lead. That he missed
10 greens yet managed to get up and down on every occasion, either to save par or make a birdie, was quite extraordinary and never once in any of those instances did he look close to being flustered.

But on the course, solid and stoic, he looked like belonged on a list of champions that includes 11 members of the World Golf Hall of Fame and global superstars such as Jack Nicklaus, Tiger Woods and Greg Norman.

NOTES: The largest final-round, come-from-behind victory in the tournament is six strokes by Raymond Floyd in 1981 at Sawgrass CC.

NOTABLES: Defending champion Jason Day closed with an 8-over 80 his second highest score in 22 rounds.

The other co-leader was J.B. Holmes, and it was a horror show for the Kentuckian. His 68 matched his low round at the Stadium Course.

Kim's best previous finish this season had been at the Valero Texas Open in San Antonio, where he tied for 22nd. In 18 holes, he went from the top of the leaderboard to a tie for 41st.

His last hurdle was getting by the final two holes where not even his two-shot lead was safe - the island green at the par-3 17th and a closing hole with water all the way down the left side.

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