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Jon Rahm wins first Major with magical birdie-birdie finish at US Open

Rahm finished a shot clear of Louis Oosthuizen after a dramatic final day at Torrey Pines.

Image: Gregory Bull

SPAIN’S JON RAHM made two clutch birdies in his final two holes to win the 2021 US Open at Torrey Pines and claim the first Major championship of his career. 

Rahm sank a birdie putt from just inside 25 feet at the 17th and rolled in an 18-footer at 18 for a final round 67 and a score of six-under par, one shot clear of South Africa’s Louis Oosthuizen.

“I have a hard time explaining what just happened because I can’t even believe I made the last two putts,” Rahm said.

Rahm had to watch Oosthuizen play the last four holes. The 2010 British Open winner took a bogey at 17 to fall two back and his birdie at 18 was only good enough to make him a Major runner-up for the sixth time.

Harris English finished in third place outright, two shots further back on three-under, while Rory McIlroy had to settle with a share of seventh place after his challenge petered out over the back nine.

McIlroy was right in contention at the turn, sitting one shot off the lead, but his round unravelled when a bad three-putt bogey on the 11th was followed by a double-bogey on 12.

His two-over par 73 left him on one-under for the tournament in a group alongside Daniel Berger, Paul Casey, Xander Schauffele and Scottie Scheffler.

Rahm became the first Spaniard to win a US Open and the fourth to capture a Major title after Sergio Garcia, Jose Maria Olazabal and the late Seve Ballesteros.

“This was definitely for Seve,” Rahm said. “I know he wanted to win this one most of all.”

Rahm also moves from world number three to world number one after Dustin Johnson finished on two-over par for a share of 19th place.

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Two weeks ago at the Memorial, Rahm tested positive for Covid-19 and spent last week in quarantine.

Rahm won on his first Father’s Day as a dad at the same course where he took his first PGA Tour title in 2017 and where he proposed to wife Kelley, who gave birth to their first child, Kepa, in April.

© – AFP, 2021

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