Patrick Cantlay won the PGA Tour’s BMW Championship after beating fellow American Bryson DeChambeau in a marathon playoff at Caves Valley Country Club in Baltimore.
Six extra holes were needed to decide the outcome, with DeChambeau missing four chances to win the title with makeable putts, while Cantlay’s was on fire with his putter all day, finally producing the killer blow at the 18th, when he drained an 15-foot putt for birdie while DeChambeau’s 10-foot attempt slipped by the edge of the cup.
Before the drama of the play-off, DeChambeau and Cantlay had earlier continued their birdie assaults on a near-defenceless Caves Valley layout, with both firing final round 66s to post a leading score of 27 under par.
With the chasing pack of Rory McIlroy, Sergio Garcia and Sungjae Im unable to keep pace with the final pairing, the tournament developed into a shootout between the top two, with Cantlay gaining the upper hand early on when he birdied four of the first five holes to open up a two-shot lead.
DeChambeau halved the deficit with a birdie at the sixth hole, and the lead changed hands around the turn after Cantlay dropped a shot at the ninth before his rival birdied the 10th – the first of three in a row for the former US Open champion. Cantlay matched DeChambeau’s birdies at the 11th and 12th and pulled level again when he holed a 20-foot putt for a three at the 14th. But DeChambeau then made a decisive birdie at the long 16th, where Cantlay did well to scramble a par-five only to come up short with his tee shot to the short 17th and find the water hazard.
DeChambeau had one hand on the trophy when he followed a perfect 334-yard drive down the last with a flick of a wedge to 12 feet, with Cantlay over 20 feet away. But Cantlay had the crowd on their feet when he knocked in his putt for his eighth birdie of the day to get back to 27 under, with DeChambeau’s putt for the win drifting left of the target.
The ensuing play-off was no less thrilling, but with the light fading it was Cantlay who held his nerve to take the title and move to the top of the FedExCup standings. He will starting next week’s Tour Championship on 10 under par, two shots ahead of Tony Finau. And the 29-year-old also secured a Ryder Cup debut next month, claiming the sixth and final automatic qualifying berth for Team USA for next month’s contest against Europe at Whistling Straits. Captain Steve Stricker will name his six wildcard picks on September 8.
This content was originally published here.