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Lee Kyoung-Hoon shoots his lowest round on the tour to retain Texas title

Seamus Power rounded off a productive few days with solid top-20 finish.

Lee Kyoung-Hoon (file pic).
Lee Kyoung-Hoon (file pic).
Image: Lee Coleman

LEE KYOUNG-HOON’S LOWEST round on the PGA Tour was enough to retain his AT&T Byron Nelson title ahead of home favourite Jordan Spieth in Texas on Sunday.

The South Korean carded a career-low 63 to finish on 26 under par to make it back-to-back wins at the tournament, becoming the first person to achieve that since Tom Watson 42 years ago.

It thwarted Spieth’s hopes of a maiden victory at his home course ahead of the American’s latest pursuit of a career grand slam at next week’s US PGA Championship

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Spieth, who was part of the final group, could only card 67 to finish on 25 under and failed to force a play-off despite a birdie on his last hole following a chip for eagle narrowly failing to land.

The Dallas-born three-time major winner had claimed a share of the lead at the halfway stage of his final round but a three-putt on the 10th from 6ft slowed his momentum.

“I hit just a shot that you don’t practice into the green and I actually thought I just stuck it and I don’t know if I could have a thousand balls and hit it where I hit it,” Spieth told reporters of his eagle attempt.

“When the day started I would have wanted to be at, I think I would have wanted to be at 25 under standing on (the) 18 tee. So I had a chance to do that with that putt on 17 and just kind of, it was just pumping into and it just dove across the hole.

“But it was a good week, good momentum into next week, last two starts being a win (at RBC Heritage) and a second, but this one will sting just a little bit just looking back on the day.”

Seamus Power rounded off a productive few days with solid top-20 finish. His closing four-under 68 saw him in a tie for 17th on 18-under, leaving the Waterford man looking good for the US PGA. Power carded 66, 67, 69 and 68 across the four days.

John Murphy’s opening-day 76 severely hampered his chances of making the cut and despite a 69 on day two, he couldn’t turn things around.

Xander Schauffele had set the clubhouse target at 23 under earlier on Sunday thanks to a stunning 61. The American almost failed to make the cut on Friday after a poor start to his second round but secured a share of fifth in the end.

Justin Thomas and Ryan Palmer were the others to finish with an overall score of 265.

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An eagle on Hideki Matsuyama’s 72nd hole had briefly put him out in front on 24 under and he would settle for joint-third with Sebastian Munoz, who held a share of the lead at the halfway mark.

Kyoung-Hoon once again came out on top though and he will now aim to build on this at Southern Hills.

The 30-year-old has never made the cut at a major in six previous attempts, with his most recent early exit being at last month’s Masters at Augusta.

An omen – of sorts – for Kyoung-Hoon is Watson winning his next tournament after claiming the 1980 Byron Nelson title – the Open Championship at Muirfield.

BTL 5

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