Rickie Fowler came through a tense duel with Henrik Stenson to win the Deutsche Bank Championship and climb to fifth place on the Official World Golf Ranking.
Rickie Fowler began the final day at TPC Boston a stroke behind Henrik Stenson, but that gap looked like growing when the Californian got off to a dreadful start: He hit a huge pull hook with his opening tee shot, straight into a hazard. But Fowler got lucky and was able to play a shot from the undergrowth. He hacked it back into play then played a superb wedge shot into around eight feet. He holed the putt for an unlikely par.
Even so, it was Stenson who continued to look the most impressive through the early part of the round. At the start of the back nine, the Swede was three clear. But Fowler struck back and, when he rolled in a long birdie putt on the 14th, he closed the gap to just one.
The turning point came on the par-3 16th. Fowler played a solid six-iron towards the pin, his ball ending just 20 feet short. Stenson then pulled out a seven-iron and tried to give it a bit extra. The wind gusted at the wrong moment and knocked his shot out of the sky, it fell short in a water hazard. A double-bogey five was the result and a two-shot-swing meant Fowler was one ahead with two to play. Both men made par on the last two holes and Fowler was the champion.
Charley Hoffman recovered well after a poor third round to post a closing 67 and climb into third place on his own.
Four talking points from the Deutsche Bank Championship
1 – Rickie Fowler is now third on the FedEx Cup standings and fifth on the Official World Golf Ranking. He’s hot on the heels of fellow youngsters – Jordan Spieth, Rory McIlroy and Jason Day.
“They’ve clearly played the best out of anyone over the past few months to couple of years,” Fowler said. “So I’m trying to be a small fourth thrown in there. But there’s a lot of other really good young players playing well right now, as well.”
It was a third big win of the year for Fowler, who also claimed The Players Championship and the Scottish Open in some style. He has proved this season that he has what it takes when the pressure is on.
“I definitely felt very calm out there, I knew what I was trying to do,” he said.
2 – Henrik Stenson finished as runner-up for the second straight week in the Fed-Ex Cup playoffs. He sits in fourth place on the standings and has put himself in a great position in the battle for the $10 million first prize. The Swede will feel, however, that this was a tournament that got away from him. He was in charge until the mistake at the 16th.
“I obviously pulled the wrong club on 16 and was trying to get the most out of a 7-iron into the wind and ballooned that one a little bit and that was the crucial mistake. Making double there was really a killer,” he said.
Henrik Stenson swing sequence:
3 – Hunter Mahan has maintained his record of playing in every FedEx Cup playoff event. He began the week in 91st on the standings (with only the top-70 going on to the BMW Championship in two weeks time,) but he rallied at TPC Boston and followed a brilliant third round of 64 with a solid 70 to claim a share of fourth place and move up to 52nd on the points list.
Also saving his season was Jerry Kelly – he birdied the final hole to sneak into the top-70. Those just missing out included Kevin Streelman and Carlos Ortiz.
4 – Despite missing the cut at the Deutsche Bank, Jordan Spieth has moved back to Number 1 on the Official World Golf Ranking. The rolling two-year method for calculating points showed that Rory lost more than Jordan this week and so the Masters and US Open champion goes back up. Rory shouldn’t worry too much though, although there’s no tournament next week, he’ll go back to the top of the tree before the BMW. It’s a complicated system!
Deutsche Bank Championship
TPC Boston, Norton, Massachusetts
Purse: $8,250,000, par 71
1 Rickie Fowler (USA) 67 67 67 68 269 $1,485,000
2 Henrik Stenson (Swe) 67 68 65 70 270 $891,000
3 Charley Hoffman (USA) 67 63 76 67 273 $561,000
T4 Jim Furyk (USA) 71 65 70 70 276 $311,025
T4 Matt Jones (Aus) 67 67 68 74 276 $311,025
T4 Hunter Mahan (USA) 69 73 64 70 276 $311,025
T4 Sean O’Hair (USA) 68 67 67 74 276 $311,025
T4 Patrick Reed (USA) 72 67 67 70 276 $311,025
T9 Jerry Kelly (USA) 71 66 68 72 277 $222,750
T9 Matt Kuchar (USA) 69 72 65 71 277 $222,750
T9 Daniel Summerhays (USA) 71 68 70 68 277 $222,750
Note: Player score in bold signifies Titleist ball usage