WATCH: How Cameron Smith and Jonas Blixt Won the Zurich Classic

Cameron Smith and Jonas Blixt outlasted Scott Brown and Kevin Kisner to win in New Orleans. (Photo Credit: The Big Lead)

For an event that had such a dramatic finish to a rain-interrupted Sunday – Kevin Kisner holed a 94-foot pitch shot for an eagle to force extra holes – the sudden-death playoff at the Zurich Classic of New Orleans was equally lacking in drama.

Eventually, though, Cameron Smith stuck a 59-yard wedge shot to within 2 feet of the hole, setting up the winning birdie for him and partner Jonas Blixt.


https://twitter.com/PGATOUR/status/859051900854861829

Until then, the Monday morning playoff played out as a series of missed opportunities. Twice, all four players played the par-5 18th hole without making birdie, each team missing good chances.

Four pars at the par-3 ninth sent the playoff back to the 18th hole where, after seeing Kisner and Scott Brown miss medium-length birdie putts, Smith nailed the winner.

When it was over, Smith – a 23-year old Australian in his second full season on the PGA Tour – hardly could speak. The victory gave him a two-year exemption and also landed him a spot in the Players Championship next week.

Smith finished tied for fourth in the 2015 U.S. Open, and he was tied for sixth at the Valero Texas Open preceding the New Orleans event.

“It’s a little different playing in these circumstances but I feel like I had the best partner here,” said Blixt, who won for the third time on Tour. “He’s going to be a superstar one day. …The sky is the limit for him.”

Kisner and Brown had led much of the final round when they shot a closing 60. Still, they needed Kisner’s dramatic hole-out to force extra holes. It was Kisner’s fourth loss in four playoffs on Tour.

Despite the loss, Kisner now owns perhaps the shot of the year on the PGA Tour.

“I’d rather hit it in that water than leave it short,” Kisner said of his eagle pitch. “I wasn’t going to leave it short. I knew I hit it a little too hard when I touched it, but I loved the line, and when it hit the flag, I said, just please don’t come out of there.”

RESULTS

http://www.pgatour.com/leaderboard.html

Comments

Recent Posts