Furyk strikes it true, and rich, at FedEx Cup finale
The permutations flew fast and furious for a time, some stretching the bounds of credibility on the most tangled final Sunday since the FedEx Cup became the PGA Tour’s version of the postseason.
One perfect storm could have given the Cup to a man who opened the week 28th on the points list. Another might have crowned points leader Matt Kuchar with a 25th-place finish. Paul Casey could have been the season champion without a tournament win.
By the end, though, the formula was pretty simple. Win the Tour Championship, win the FedEx Cup.
Not that Jim Furyk didn’t provide some rain-soaked drama there as well.
“I have a tendency to make it interesting,” said Furyk, who shook off backto-back bogeys with a bunker save at No. 18 that delivered the whole $11.35-million enchilada.
The former U.S. Open champion’s sand shot checked up 30 inches beyond the hole, setting up a winning par and a one-stroke triumph over Luke Donald.
Furyk’s victory, combined with stumbles by those above him on the points list, allowed the Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla., pro to jump all the way from 11th in the standings to the top spot. Seeing the final putt drop, he punched the air with his fist as he let his exhilaration flow.
Even though, he later admitted, he wasn’t entirely sure the Cup was his.
“To be honest with you,” he said, “coming up [No.] 18 I assumed I was playing for the FedEx Cup, but I wasn’t 100% sure.”
Furyk finished with 2,980 points in the final standings, with Kuchar falling to second at 2,728. Donald moved from seventh to third with 2,700.
“This one is a season,” Furyk said, pointing to the futuristic FedEx Cup bowl. “This one [Tour Championship] is in this one [FedEx Cup], if that makes sense.”
Sunday’s triumph also was Furyk’s third of 2010, more than anyone else on the PGA Tour. He pocketed $1.35 million for the tournament win, plus the $10 million annuity that goes to the FedEx Cup champ.
“That’s what Jim Furyk is, Mr. Unflappable,” Casey said. “There is no surprise to any of the guys playing in this tournament that Jim has hung around at the top of the leaderboard and hasn’t given anything to anybody.”
Furyk carded an evenpar 70 Sunday, finishing at eight-under 272. Donald also shot a 70, chipping in for birdie at No. 17 to give himself a chance but unable to convert a 43-foot birdie putt at the 18th.
“I told my caddie [at No. 17] I need to chip this in and make a two at the last. Obviously, I did half of it,” said Donald, who also would have claimed the Cup with a victory.
Retief Goosen (71) placed third at 274, with Casey (69) and Nick Watney (67) another shot back. Watney was the longshot, starting the week 28th on the points list but moving into contention with a back-nine 28 on Saturday and a front-nine 30 Sunday.