Jon Rahm wins U.S. Open to claim first major title

PUBLISHED: Mon, 21 Jun 2021 00:35:58 GMT

Jon Rahm of Spain shot 4-under-par 67 in the final round of the U.S. Open to cap a remarkable turnaround from two weeks ago and capture his first major championship Sunday at Torrey Pines in San Diego.

Rahm’s four-round total of 6 under was good for a one-shot victory on South African Louis Oosthuizen.

Rahm had birdies on the final two holes — both with putts of more than 18 feet — to move to the front, but Oosthuizen, who was in the final pairing, had three holes to play at that point.

Oosthuizen secured five consecutive pars after a bogey on the par-3 11th, but a bogey on No. 17 pretty much ended his chances unless he could produce an eagle on the last hole — something he pulled off Saturday.

Not this time, as he settled for birdie and a final-round 71.

Two weekends ago, Rahm dealt with devastation when a positive COVID-19 test meant he was forced to withdraw from the Memorial despite holding a six-shot lead after three rounds. That sent him into quarantine, putting his entry into the U.S. Open in jeopardy.

Rahm, 26, tied for third place in the 2019 U.S. Open for his previous best outing in a major. His background at the championship was notable because he was the low amateur in 2016, when he tied for 23rd.

Rahm tied for the best score in the field Sunday, with Patrick Reed and South Africa’s Branden Grace also shooting 67s.

Oosthuizen has won one major (2010 British Open) and he now has six runner-up spots in majors. That list includes tying for second at last month’s PGA Championship.

Harris English finished third at 3 under, with his final-round 68 his lone sub-70 score of the tournament. He had bogeys on three of the first four holes, but played the last five holes in 3 under.

Brooks Koepka (69), Collin Morikawa (70) and Italy’s Guido Migliozzi (68) were at 2 under to share fourth place.

Russell Henley and Canada’s Mackenzie Hughes, who along with Oosthuizen were tied atop the leaderboard through three rounds, weren’t factors. Henley (76) tied for 13th at even for the tournament and Hughes (77) tied for 15th at 1 over.

There were 20 golfers within five shots of the lead when the round began.

Defending champion Bryson DeChambeau was two shots off the lead when the day began and was 2 under for the round through eight holes. He tumbled out of contention, playing Nos. 11-17 in 8 over and ending up with a 77. His quadruple-bogey 8 on No. 17 was the final damage.

DeChambeau’s 3 over put him tied for 26th.

PGA Championship winner Phil Mickelson shot 75 and finished 11 over, tying for 62nd place.

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