Memphis, TN – The finale in Southwest Tennessee was a nail-biter as there was plenty of star power atop the leaderboard, but it was first time PGA Tour winner Abraham Ancer who emerged as the champion. On Sunday afternoon, Harris English seemingly had the tournament in his hands as he dominated the field all week but something happened on the back nine. He double-bogeyed both the par-3 11th hole and par-3 14th to lose what was a 5-shot lead at one point and ultimately missed the playoff by a single stroke.
The 2021 WGC FedEx St. Jude Invitational was quite entertaining leading up to the playoff. Bryson DeChambeau made headlines again after refusing to answer questions about his COVID-19 positive test that prevented him from playing in the Olympics. He declined media interviews even after an impressive 3rd round 63 that vaulted him to the last group on Sunday. Unfortunately for Bryson, after a back nine of 6-over par, it wasn’t meant to be. Australian born Cameron Smith also made waves with his flatstick as he posted a total of 18 putts during his Saturday round, tieing the PGA Tour record for fewest putts. Rory McIlroy also found himself in good form this week with a back door T12. Rory adjusted his driver the past few weeks and drove the ball beautifully at TPC Southwind. After a first round 72, he followed it up with 3 rounds of 66.
Mexican golfer Abraham Ancer was the real storyline this week. A graduate of the University of Oklahoma, Ancer was steady on the back nine at TPC Southwind, only birdieing the par-4 13th in his final round to grab a spot in the 3-man playoff between him, Sam Burns and Masters Champ Hideki Matsuyama. All three players made par in the first trip back up 18. The second trip, neither Burns nor Hideki would make birdie which left the door open for Abe and, boy did he Ancer! This is Abraham Ancer’s first PGA Tour victory which will grant him exemptions to the 2022 Masters, British Open, US Open and PGA Championship, as well as the Tournament of Champions in January.
Next week, the Tour heads the Wyndham Championship in North Carolina.
Abraham Ancer’s WITB:
Driver: Callaway Epic Speed Triple Diamond LS (8.5°, Mitsubishi Tensei CK Pro Blue 60 TX shaft)
3-wood: TaylorMade SIM2 Max (Project X Evenflow Riptide 70 X shaft)
5-wood: TaylorMade M2 (18°, Matrix VLCT St 105 shaft)
Utility: Srixon ZX (4-iron, 23°, Mitsubishi Chemical MMT shaft)
Irons: Miura TC-201 (5-PW, Mitsubishi MMT 105 TX shafts)
Wedges: Miura HB-10 (52), Artisan Prototype (56°, 60°, True Temper Dynamic Gold S400 shafts)
Putter: Odyssey White Hot No. 5 Stroke Lab
Ball: Titleist Pro V1x