• Thursday, Dec 12, 2019
  • Last Update : 08:31 pm

Woods equals 54-year old record

  • Published at 05:40 pm October 28th, 2019
Tiger

The 15-time major winner held off the challenge of home favourite Hideki Matsuyama to win by three shots at the weather-delayed tournament, his first outing since arthroscopic left knee surgery in August

Tiger Woods made golf history Monday when he won the Zozo Championship in Japan for his 82nd US PGA Tour victory - equalling Sam Snead's 54-year-old record and adding to his long list of achievements.

The 15-time major winner held off the challenge of home favourite Hideki Matsuyama to win by three shots at the weather-delayed tournament, his first outing since arthroscopic left knee surgery in August.

Woods broke into a huge smile after he birdied the 18th to complete a three-under final round of 67 and finish 19-under par at Accordia Golf Narashino Country Club.

His first came 23 years ago this month in Las Vegas, when he was 20.

Woods pocketed a cheque for £1.755m.

Woods led from gun to tape in the inaugural US PGA Tour event in Japan, which saw Friday's play washed out by the fringes of a typhoon that dumped almost 10 inches (25cm) of rain on the course 50m (80km) from Tokyo, forcing play into an extra day.

US PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan was watching at home in the US. 

Woods said it was "cool" that, with the addition of his latest title in Japan, he had now won US PGA Tour events in seven different countries. 

Woods resumed his final round, suspended due to darkness Sunday, at 7:30 am on the long par-12th but saw his overnight three-shot cushion over Matsuyama immediately cut to two.

Matsuyama inexplicably spurned an easy opportunity to reduce the deficit to one as he missed a four-foot birdie putt on 14, but Woods made no mistake on the same green from 20 feet. 

Woods missed a further birdie chance, from 10 feet, at the 15th and was watching from the 16th tee 181 yards away as Matsuyama walked in a 20-footer to get to 16-under.

Matsuyama kept up the pressure but on the final hole his bunker shot flew past the flag and when he missed the long putt back his brave challenge ended at 16-under for the tournament after a final-round 67.

Playing partner Gary Woodland said he had been privileged to have a front-row seat for the last two rounds as Woods played "unbelievable" golf.

World No 2 Rory McIlroy finished birdie-birdie for a 67 and a share of third place on 13-under par with South Korea's PGA Tour Rookie of the Year Im Sung-jae who carded a fine five-under 65.