(Nassau) Scottie Scheffler had no difficulty in posting a 68 (under-4) and winning the World Hero Challenge by three strokes on Sunday.
Scheffler, who had finished second at this tournament in the Bahamas the last two years, didn’t make a bogey and didn’t let anyone get within two shots on the back nine.
Although the Global Hero Challenge is not an official event, the 20 players present received points on the leaderboard. Scheffler scored a fifth victory this year and took the opportunity to solidify his place at number one in the world.
It wasn’t a completely lost week for tournament host Tiger Woods, who was playing for the first time since surgery on his left ankle a few weeks after the Masters in April.
Woods played all 72 holes of a tournament for only the third time in the last two years. He has competed in six tournaments since recovering from a serious right leg injury suffered in a car accident in February 2021.
“I’m curious what the rest will look like,” Woods said. I haven’t done it in a while and I haven’t done it with my current ankle. I was excited each day to try to have a good round. »
Woods finished the tournament with a round of 72 and took 18e level, on par with normal. Scheffler took top honors with a cumulative score of minus-20.
Sepp Straka made three late birdies to shoot a 64 and move into second place. Justin Thomas shot a 67 and finished alone in third position.
Scheffler led the PGA Tour in virtually every important statistic, until he found himself on the greens. He sought help from renowned putting coach Phil Kenyon and immediately began seeing results.
“I played well and kept my distance,” Scheffler said. I was just trying to hit good shots and have as many opportunities for birdies as possible. »
Scheffler hadn’t played since the Ryder Cup and this was his first 72-hole tournament since the PGA Tour Championship in late August. He said he was optimistic about the work done with Kenyon before the Ryder Cup.
“It’s good to see results quickly,” Scheffler said. It paid off well this week. »
Scheffler didn’t make his first birdie until he hit a nice approach on the sixth hole. He then placed his ball two feet from the hole at the seventh flag.
Straka, Thomas and Jordan Spieth were sometimes ready to have a good streak. Scheffler responded with well-timed birdies to resist them. He missed a short putt for birdie at 17e hole, which was his only failure of the week at a distance of less than five feet.
Woods was never in the lead after each round, which was not his main goal. He knew there would be rust and he felt like he was removing a little of it every day. But not completely.
Woods remains optimistic that he will be able to play one tournament per month in 2024.
“If you ask me now, I’m a little sore,” he observed. Once a month seems reasonable to me. That gives me a few weeks to recover. Maybe I can find a rhythm. That’s what the plan was for next year. I don’t see why that would change. »