Vegas de­fends Canadian Open ti­tle

The Register Citizen (Torrington, CT) - - SPORTS -

Jhonat­tan Vegas suc­cess­fully de­fended his RBC Canadian Open ti­tle Sun­day at Glen Abbey, beat­ing Charley Hoff­man with a birdie on the first hole of a play­off.

Jhonat­tan Vegas suc­cess­fully de­fended his RBC Canadian Open ti­tle Sun­day at Glen Abbey in Oakville, On­tario, beat­ing Charley Hoff­man with a birdie on the first hole of a play­off.

Vegas’ ap­proach from the left bunker on the par-5 18th hit the grass just above the sand lip and still had enough power to clear the wa­ter and go through the green.

“When I heard the clip, be­cause ob­vi­ously I didn’t see it, I knew that it was prob­a­bly go­ing to go in the wa­ter, be­cause I didn’t know ex­actly how hard it hit it,” Vegas said. “But then when I saw the ball in the air, it was still go­ing re­ally hard and for­ward.”

The 32-year-old Venezue­lan chipped to a foot — af­ter rac­ing a chip past the hole in reg­u­la­tion from the same area en route to a par — and won when Hoff­man’s birdie try from the back bunker slid past the hole.

“It’s been a spe­cial day,” Vegas said. “I knew that I had to shoot a good round to­day to have a chance to win again. I just came out with an ag­gres­sive men­tal­ity, just feel­ing re­ally good about my game. When I started mak­ing a few birdies, es­pe­cially the putt for birdie on 7, I started feel­ing the same chills that I felt last year when I won, and I just knew that some­thing good could hap­pen if I kept that go­ing.”

Vegas closed with a 7-un­der 65 to match Hoff­man at 21-un­der 267.

Vegas is pay­ing close at­ten­tion to the tur­moil in Venezuela, where peo­ple stayed away from the polls in mas­sive num­bers Sun­day in a show of protest against a vote to grant Pres­i­dent Ni­co­las Maduro’s rul­ing so­cial­ist party vir­tu­ally un­lim­ited pow­ers.

“It’s been on my mind. It’s al­ways on my mind,” Vegas said. “I have fam­ily that live there. It’s my coun­try of birth. I mean, it hurts. Like I said yes­ter­day, it hurts a lot, see­ing the coun­try the way it is; see­ing a gov­ern­ment that treats peo­ple that way when they don’t de­serve it just to re­main in power, and all the suf­fer­ing that even my fam­ily and friends that are hav­ing right now, it’s just not fair.”

Hoff­man, the thir­dround leader, birdied the 18th for a 68.

Se­nior Bri­tish Open

Bern­hard Langer won the Se­nior Bri­tish Open in rain and wind at Royal Porth­cawl in Bridgend, Wales, for his record-ex­tend­ing 10th se­nior ma­jor ti­tle and fifth in the last 10.

The 59-year-old Ger­man star closed with an even­par 72 to fin­ish at 4-un­der 280 and beat Amer­i­can Corey Pavin by three strokes. Langer joined Jack Nick­laus as the only play­ers to win three se­nior ma­jors in a sea­son, and won the event for the third time to match the tour­na­ment record.

Langer won the Re­gions Tra­di­tion and Se­nior PGA Cham­pi­onship — the first two of the PGA Cham­pi­ons Tour’s five ma­jors — in con­sec­u­tive weeks in May. Nick­laus won three of the then-four ma­jors in 1991.

Langer also won in 2010 at Carnoustie and took the 2014 event at Royal Porth­cawl by 13 strokes. Tom Wat­son and Gary Player are the only other three­time win­ners, with Player’s ti­tles com­ing be­fore the event was a ma­jor or part of the PGA Cham­pi­ons Tour.

Ladies Scot­tish Open

Mi Hyang Lee took ad­van­tage of Hall of Famer Kar­rie Webb’s late dou­ble bo­gey to win the Ladies Scot­tish Open in Irvine, Scot­land, for her sec­ond LPGA Tour ti­tle.

A stroke ahead of Lee with two holes left at chilly Dun­don­ald Links, Webb dropped a shot back with the dou­ble bo­gey on the par-5 17th af­ter driv­ing into a bunker and hav­ing to play out back­ward.

Lee, play­ing in the group ahead of Webb, in­creased the mar­gin to two with a birdie on the par-5 18th. Need­ing an ea­gle to force a play­off, Webb closed with a birdie to tie for sec­ond with Mi Jung Hur. Webb didn’t know she was two strokes be­hind be­cause of the lack of a leader­board on the fi­nal hole in the tuneup event for the Ri­coh Women’s Bri­tish Open next week at Kings­barns.

Lee shot a 6-un­der 66 to fin­ish at 6-un­der 282. Af­ter play­ing the front nine in 5-un­der 31 with six birdies and a bo­gey, the South Korean player made eight straight pars be­fore birdieing the last. She also was con­fused on 18 with­out a leader­board, think­ing she needed to an ea­gle to tie Webb.

Euro­pean Open

Jor­dan Smith beat de­fend­ing cham­pion Alexan­der Levy in a two-hole play­off to win the Euro­pean Open in Ham­burg, Germany.

Levy led by a sin­gle shot at the 18th hole, but the French player had to tap in a tricky par putt to force the play­off af­ter play­ing part­ner Smith, the overnight leader, holed his 10-foot birdie putt to go 13-un­der.

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