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The final leaderboard for the 2016 Honda Classic at the PGA National Champion Course in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida is in. Adam Scott hung on down the stretch to claim the title by one stroke over runner-up Sergio Garcia — his first on Tour in almost two years. Below is the truncated top-10 leaderboard:
(1) Adam Scott (-9)
(2) Sergio Garcia (-8)
(T3) Blayne Barber (-5)
(T3) Justin Thomas (-5)
(5) Graeme McDowell (-4)
(T6) Vijay Singh (-3)
(T6) Rickie Fowler (-3)
(T8) William McGirt (-2)
(T8) Billy Horschel (-2)
(T10) Sung Kang (-1)
(T10) Luke List (-1)
(T10) John Senden (-1)
(T10) Scott Brown (-1)
Here are my thoughts and a few statistics on the champion and some notable golfers near the top of the leaderboard:
Winner: Adam Scott (-9) – This is 35-year-old Scott’s first Honda Classic win and first Tour win since the 2014 Crowne Plaza Invitational. He currently has the most Tour wins out of anyone under the age of 40. Since the start of the 2015-2016 wraparound season he’s had two runner-ups (the CIMB Classic last October and the Northern Trust Open last week). He was clearly able to carry his good form into the tournament this week. Previous finishes at the Honda include a T12 in 2014 and a missed cut in 2011. I must say that I’m quite surprised he’s been performing so well given his forced move away from the anchored putting stroke — I thought that more or less it would been the end of the road for him, but evidently I was wrong. It certainly speaks to his talent as a golfer. It’ll be interesting to see how well he maintains his form leading into the Masters and the rest of the year.
Today: 3 birdies and 3 bogeys for an even-par 70. He bogeyed the 16th but was able to grind it out with pars on the final two holes to stay just out of reach of Garcia, who birdied the last. Scores over four rounds: 70, 65, 66, 70 (271).
Sergio Garcia (-8) – A name that hasn’t appeared near the top of a PGA Tour leaderboard in quite some time now, this would have been Garcia’s 9th Tour win; his last one was the Wyndham Championship in 2012, although he did lose in a playoff at the 2015 Players and also won the Qatar Masters (a European Tour event) in 2014. He missed the cut last week at the Northern Trust, and prior to this week finished no better than T11 for the 2015-2016 season. His four previous finishes at the Honda were a T31 (2015), a T8 (2014), a T50 (2010) and a T13 (2009). Is this the year Garcia is finally going to break through and win a major? At 36, some would say his prime years are behind him. We shall see what happens.
Today: 2 birdies and 3 bogeys for a 1-over 71. He parred the entire front nine. On the back nine, a run of two bogeys on holes 16 and 17 just about quashed his chances — he wasn’t able to make the eagle he needed on the par-5 18th to get into a playoff. Scores over four rounds: 65, 69, 67, 71 (272).