Jon Rahm keeps his cool to win ‘stressful’ Mexican Open after tense ending

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Having failed to win a PGA Tour event since the US Open last summer, the Spaniard was pushed to the wire to end his drought, surviving a late flurry from American pair Brandon Wu and Tony Finau to pick up a one-shot win.

The world No. 2 arrived at Vidanta Vallarta as a favorite and played true to predictions with an impressive performance through the first three rounds, opening with a seven under 64 as he headed into the final day with a advance two moves.

“Thursday, Friday I played amazing and had incredible control of my game, it looked like nothing could really go wrong,” Rahm said in his post-tournament press conference.

However, Sunday’s scintillating performances from Wu and Finau – who had started the final round seven shots adrift from Rahm – left Rahm facing a nervous back nine.

After a bogey on the 10, three pars either side of a birdie on the 14 left Rahm forced to parry on the final par-5 hole. Although he drove his tee shot into the rough, Rahm recovered at par , finishing at two under 69 and capturing his seventh PGA Tour title.

“Pretty stressful weekend, until the end,” said Rahm CBS.

“I didn’t think having a par-5 where a fade off the tee shot was necessary would stress me out so much, but I did in the end.”

Back to #1?

The victory in Mexico means Rahm now has at least one win in each of his last six professional seasons, as the 27-year-old seeks to return Scottie Scheffler to the top of the world rankings.

The American edged out Rahm in first place and has had an incredible start to 2022, triumphing at the Masters last month for his first career major after a run of three wins from five tournaments.
The victory at the Mexican Open was the first of the season for Rahm.

“It feels good to get this first win,” added Rahm. “At the start of the season I had a few chances and I couldn’t close them. Today was a battle but I did it.

“My first wire to wire victory. Even if it was hard at the end, I will accept it,” he added.

He’ll have the chance to catch Scheffler at the PGA Championship at Southern Hills on May 19, but Rahm also eyes impact beyond the titles.

Scottie Scheffler

Reflecting on the legacy of his hero and compatriot Seve Ballesteros, Rahm believes he can help keep the game growing in Mexico.

“I play because of him [Seve] and nowadays we have a much bigger reach, the PGA Tour is becoming a bigger tour and with social media we are global stars – bigger than they were in the past – and I feel that I can also make an impact in Mexico,” Rahm said.

“You can even see golf growing in Mexico. It’s a real honor to be able to come here for this first edition of the event and be the champion.”



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