The US PGA Championship at Quail Hollow Golf Club was won by Justin Thomas who finished eight under par to secure his first major victory. Kevin Kisner had headed into the final round in control at the top of the leader board, with Thomas trailing by two shots, but the American fought back to claim victory in North Carolina.
He carded a three-under-par 68 that saw him finish first, ahead of Francesco Molinari, Patrick Reed and Louis Oosthuzien who all tied for second.
It was a dramatic tournament win for Justin Thomas as the American, who started the round five under par, slipped further behind frontrunner Kevin Kisner after hitting two bogeys from his opening three holes. This left Thomas three shots adrift and in need of a remarkable turnaround to overthrow Kisner at the top of the leader board.
Good play by Thomas, who hit birdies at seven and nine, saw him reduce the arrears and this was helped further as Kisner found the water on the seventh hole. This saw Thomas, the World No.14, see his playing partner Hideki Matsuyama storm into the lead after hitting consecutive birdies. Matsuyama was aiming to deliver the first male major title to Japan but a bad back nine saw him lose momentum and Thomas looked to pounce.
Thomas hit a well struck birdie on the tenth, which seemed to take forever to drop, before moving two shots clear of his nearest rivals after a well-executed chip shot from the edge of the green. The crowd were behind the American and momentum was gathering as he birdied the 17th. He hit a bogey on the final hole but still led with Kisner needed to eagle the final hole to force a play-off but disaster struck as he double bogeyed after finding the water.
It’s been a great year so far for Justin Thomas, with the US PGA Championship being his fourth victory of the year so far. The tournament win sees the American climb from world number 14 to world number 6 and deservedly so. He really seized the initiative to close the gap on those in front of him, with some terrific golf, before opening up a lead of his own that allowed him to drop a shot on the final hole and still be in full control of proceedings.
Rory McIlroy had headed into the tournament as one of the favourites, looking to end his major’s drought but he finished a disappointing one over par and cited a rib injury was to blame and that it may see him miss the rest of the 2017 campaign. Jordan Spieth was also fancied by many as he looked to secure the record for being the youngest player to complete a career Grand Slam. Spieth eventually finished 2 over par and saw his record breaking hopes dashed.