Westwood holds his nerve to claim victory

Lee Westwood ended his long wait for a second PGA Tour victory after he defeated Sweden's Robert Karlsson in a sudden-death play-off as the St Jude Classic reached a dramatic conclusion in Memphis last night.

After numerous near-misses in the past three seasons, including top-three finishes at the 2008 US Open and 2009 US PGA championships as well as the runner-up spot in this year's Masters and a tie for fourth at The Players last month, Westwood completed the perfect preparation for the US Open at Pebble Beach with victory at the fourth play-off hole. The world number three, without a victory in the United States since the 1998 Freeport-McDermott Classic in New Orleans, had looked out of contention at TPC Southwind as American Robert Garrigus took a three-shot lead to the 72nd hole, only to triple bogey and send the event into a three-way sudden-death play-off with he and Karlsson.

There was further woe for Garrigus as they went to sudden death at the 18th, the American avoiding the water this time but overcooking his tee shot and sending his ball directly behind a tree, from which he could only bogey as the Europeans parred.

Three play-off holes could not separate Westwood and Karlsson as they parred the par-three 11th and then each bogeyed the 12th after missing with side-by-side putts from five feet. Back on the 18th for the fourth play-off hole, Westwood took the initiative as he sent in a pitching wedge to four feet after Karlsson sent an eight iron to around 35 feet from the flag. Karlsson's putt rolled just wide, leaving Westwood needing his first birdie in 17 holes to secure his much-longed for win.

Westwood and Karlsson had been beneficiaries of Garrigus' anxiety as he tried to close out his maiden victory. After a hat-trick of birdies on the front nine at the par-70 course, Westwood parred his way around while overnight leader Garrigus recovered from two early bogeys to tie the Englishman at the top of the leaderboard with birdies at the eighth and 10th.

And the American moved ahead with further birdies at the 15th and 16th while Westwood bogeyed the 17th after just missing a par putt from the fringe of the green. That gave Garrigus a three-stroke lead heading to the last and when Westwood missed a birdie putt at the last to finish on 10 under par, it looked as if his chance was gone.

There was more drama, though, as Garrigus sent his tee shot into water to the left of the dog-legged 18th fairway and then, having taken a drop, sent his second shot into trees on the way to a triple-bogey seven.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Where the spooks get their coffee fix: The busiest Starbucks in the US is also the most secretive

The secret CIA Starbucks

The coffee shop is deep inside the agency's forested Virginia compound
Revealed: How the Establishment closed ranks over fallout from Loch Ness Monster 'sighting'

How the Establishment closed ranks over fallout from Nessie 'sighting'

The Natural History Museum's chief scientist was dismissed for declaring he had found the monster
One million Britons using food banks, according to Trussell Trust

One million Britons using food banks

Huge surge in number of families dependent on emergency food aid
Excavation at Italian cafe to fix rising damp unearths 2,500 years of history in 3,000 amazing objects

2,500 years of history in 3,000 amazing objects

Excavation at Italian cafe to fix rising damp unearths trove
The Hubble Space Telescope's amazing journey, 25 years on

The Hubble Space Telescope's amazing journey 25 years on

The space telescope was seen as a costly flop on its first release
Did Conservative peer Lord Ashcroft quit the House of Lords to become a non-dom?

Did Lord Ashcroft quit the House of Lords to become a non-dom?

A document seen by The Independent shows that a week after he resigned from the Lords he sold 350,000 shares in an American company - netting him $11.2m
Apple's ethnic emojis are being used to make racist comments on social media

Ethnic emojis used in racist comments

They were intended to promote harmony, but have achieved the opposite
Sir Kenneth Branagh interview: 'My bones are in the theatre'

Sir Kenneth Branagh: 'My bones are in the theatre'

The actor-turned-director’s new company will stage five plays from October – including works by Shakespeare and John Osborne
The sloth is now the face (and furry body) of three big advertising campaigns

The sloth is the face of three ad campaigns

Priya Elan discovers why slow and sleepy wins the race for brands in need of a new image
How to run a restaurant: As two newbies discovered, there's more to it than good food

How to run a restaurant

As two newbies discovered, there's more to it than good food
Record Store Day: Remembering an era when buying and selling discs were labours of love

Record Store Day: The vinyl countdown

For Lois Pryce, working in a record shop was a dream job - until the bean counters ruined it
Usher, Mary J Blige and Will.i.am to give free concert as part of the Global Poverty Project

Mary J Blige and Will.i.am to give free concert

The concert in Washington is part of the Global Citizen project, which aims to encourage young people to donate to charity
10 best tote bags

Accessorise with a stylish shopper this spring: 10 best tote bags

We find carriers with room for all your essentials (and a bit more)
Paul Scholes column: I hear Manchester City are closing on Pep Guardiola for next summer – but I'd also love to see Jürgen Klopp managing in England

Paul Scholes column

I hear Manchester City are closing on Pep Guardiola for next summer – but I'd also love to see Jürgen Klopp managing in England
Jessica Ennis-Hill: 'I just want to give it my best shot'

Jessica Ennis-Hill: 'I just want to give it my best shot'

The heptathlete has gone from the toast of the nation to being a sleep-deprived mum - but she’s ready to compete again. She just doesn't know how well she'll do...