Tony Finau wins Northern Trust, his first victory in 1,975 days


But on Monday afternoon, Finau ended their long wait for their second PGA Tour win, beating Cameron Smith in the playoffs to win the Northern Trust at Liberty National Golf Club.

In those five years without a win, Finau landed eight second and 39 top-10s. No wonder he looked relieved after hitting the winning putt to claim his first victory since the 2016 Puerto Rican Opem.

“I have extreme confidence in myself, and I have to do it,” Finau, 31, told reporters.

“This game is tough as it is. These guys are so good that it is. If you can’t believe you can beat them, man, it’s just an uphill battle, and I still believe it. “

Finau couldn’t have ended his sterile run on a bigger stage, winning the first leg of the FedExCup playoffs, which will crown the PGA Tour champion of the season.

After the Northern Trust final tournament was delayed until Monday due to Tropical Storm Henri making landfall in the northeastern United States over the weekend, Finau had an excellent 65 final tournament. to finish at 20 under par for the tournament with the Australian. Smith, forcing the two to make the playoffs.

But on the first hole, Finau picked up his momentous victory, which propels him to the top of the FedExCup rankings with two tournaments to play – this week’s BMW Championship and the Tour Championship in Atlanta in September.

The Northern Trust is the first FedEx Cup playoff event of the PGA Tour.

The FedEx Cup sees players rack up ranking points throughout the season, with the top 125 entering the first qualifying round.

The field is small with the last 30 players competing in the Tour Championship, where the FedExCup champion takes home $ 15 million.

“I believe in myself,” Finau added. “I believe in my team. I haven’t had the wins to maybe have that kind of confidence and conviction, but you just have to.

“I have to believe I can go out there and beat JT today, and I can beat Jon Rahm,” Finau continued, referring to Justin Thomas and the world No. 1 in golf. “I have to believe it, and I did, and I continue to do it, and that’s the only reason I’m sitting here today as a champion.”

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Finau putt on the 18th hole of the Northern Trust playoffs.

Some difficult days

Patrick Reed’s return to Liberty National, where he won the Northern Trust in 2019, did not go as planned.

The American, who entered the tournament ranked 22nd in the FedExCup rankings, was forced to retire with an ankle injury.

And in the final round, Reed released a statement saying he was at home in Houston battling double pneumonia.

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“The good news is my ankle is fine,” he wrote. “The bad news is that I have been in the hospital with bilateral pneumonia. I am on the road to recovery, once I get cleared by the doctors – I can’t wait to go back. wish all the best and can’t wait to go back!

“Thank you very much for your support,” he continued, “it means a lot to me. Special thanks to the doctors, nurses and staff at the Methodist Hospital at Texas Medical Center.”

Reed also pulled out of this week’s BMW Championship, the second FedExCup playoff event, also on Monday.

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