Jim Furyk emerged from the pack to win the Chevron World Challenge at Sherwood Country Club by a single shot from Northern Ireland’s Graeme McDowell. It was the American’s first victory for over two years.

Furyk began the final round two shots behind McDowell who had replaced tournament host Tiger Woods in the field at short notice. But Furyk took the lead with a birdie at the 10th and never relinquished his position at the top of the leaderboard.

The tournament was effectively won by two key putts on the last two holes. On the 17th, Furyk’s tee-shot found sand and he could only blast out some 35 feet from the cup. But, he holed the par putt to maintain his advantage. Then, on the last, he fired his approach in to five feet and converted the birdie chance.

That closing three proved vital as McDowell also finished with a birdie to narrow the gap at the top to just one. The Northern Irishman ended the week in second place, picked up $800,000 and climbed to 38th on the Official World Golf Ranking – virtually guaranteeing a start in the 2010 Masters.

Lee Westwood had a chance to tie Furyk with a birdie at the last but his effort from off the green narrowly missed. He then missed the par putt and fell back into a tie for third with Padraig Harrington.

With the victory, his first since the Canadian Open of 2007, Furyk climbed to sixth on the Official World Golf Ranking. “That’s your goal every year to go out and win,” he said. “I haven’t been able to do it. Hopefully, this will be a stepping stone.”

Chevron World Challenge
Sherwood Country Club, California
Dec 3-6, purse $5,750,000, par 72

1    Jim Furyk (USA)        70    71    67    67    275    $1,350,000
2    Graeme McDowell (NIR) 71    69    66    70    276    $800,000
T3    Padraig Harrington (Ire) 69    68    70    70    277    $450,000
T3    Lee Westwood (Eng)    71    67    69    70    277    $450,000

T5    Stewart Cink (USA)    70    73    68    68    279    $243,750
T5    Zach Johnson (USA)    68    70    74    67    279    $243,750
T5    Sean O’Hair (USA)    71    67    71    70    279    $243,750
T5    Ian Poulter (Eng)        68    69    71    71    279    $243,750
9    Yong-eun Yang (Kor)    70    65    71    74    280    $195,000
10    Steve Stricker (USA)    71    74    71    65    281    $190,000

Note: Player scores in bold signifies Titleist ball usage only