Tour Rookie Keegan Bradley records his maiden victory on the HP Byron Nelson Championship
Keegan Bradley made his charge in the final round of the HP Byron Nelson Championship and came all the way out of obscurity to clinch his maiden victory on the PGA Tour on the first playoff hole, on Sunday, May 29.
Bradley had earlier finished his final round with a two-under, 68 and moved in contention for the first place with Ryan Palmer who has been leading the tournament for two consecutive rounds. Both players had an aggregate score of three-under, 277 when Palmer
fell for the sweeping gusts of wind on the final day and closed his round for 72. Bradley went over to par the first playoff hole while Palmer shot his approach in the water and later stumbled on a bogey.
Perhaps it was more of luck than anything that Palmer fell behind in the final round while Bradley soared to the top. Bradley’s approach shot for the playoff hole came back inches from the water while Palmer on the other hand, saw his three days hard work
ruined by the lopsided drive on the same hole.
"I had a clear punch shot but it's so easy to hit it left when I'm trying to hit a punch like that, and it squared left a little bit," said Bradley. "Then my putt, just wanted to tease myself a little more, I guess. But I got into the position to win the
golf tournament and that's all I can ask for."
Bradley was playing as a tour rookie and the victory has come just eight days ahead of his 25th birthday. Bradley comes from a family of golfers and his aunt, LPGA legend Pat Bradley, has won 31 times on the tour and has six major victories.
Bradley said, "I talk to her regularly through text messages and phone calls about tournaments and what it's like to come down near the end. This is the closest thing we ever had in common in terms of playing."
Ryuji Imada and Joe Ogilvie finished one shot behind the leaders. Defending champion Jason Day settled for the fifth place with his final day score of 67. Sergio Garcia, who had a brilliant three day session in the tournament despite his ongoing battle with
the finger injury, shot a disappointing final round of 77 to drop down the leaderboard.