PGA Championship: Things you might have missed
The final major championship of 2017 is now firmly in the books and, suffice to say, the 99th PGA Championship was quite a spectacle.
Three-time major winner Jordan Spieth was by the 18th green at a reworked Quail Hollow to watch his ‘bro’ Justin Thomas capture a first major championship. It was an impressive win and richly deserved after holding his nerve on the ‘Green Mile’ while other saw their own challenges falter.
The performance in Charlotte, North Carolina helped propel Thomas up the Official World Golf Rankings to a career high sixth position. Who knows where he can go from here, but he seems to have the game to emulate his close friend in becoming a multiple major winner.
To help wrap up our coverage of the PGA Championship, here are a few things you might have missed over the four days of play.
Phil and Ernie: Ton up but ultimately cut
This week’s event in North Carolina saw both Phil Mickelson and Ernie Els join an exclusive club of men who have managed a 100th appearance in major championships.
Both will have been hoping for a better performance at the 99th PGA Championship, struggling as they did to finish well below the five-over-par cut-line score required to extend into the weekend.
It was a second straight missed cut in majors for Phil, while both men succumbed this week as a result of too much time spent hacking wayward tee-shots out of the native rough. Try as they might by straining every creative sinew in a brave ‘damage limitation’ effort, both men were comfortably outside the score required to extend their stay in North Carolina into the weekend.
Let's ignore the bad and focus on the good. You can catch Phil's highlights below:
Rahm embraces 'inner-Seve'
While firmly out of contention during his final round at Quail Hollow on Sunday, Spaniard Jon Rahm dug deep into his creative arsenal to conjure up a ‘behind-the-back’ approach shot on the final hole of his 2017 PGA Championship adventure.
Perhaps if the prodigious talent had been in contention for a first major championship he would have removed a shoe and sock, but the gallery around the 18th hole was in raptures when he found the green with a little stroke of genius.
JT’s ‘wait-for-it’ birdie
Almost everyone will have seen this one, but it’s surely worth another look.
While chasing down Hideki Matsuyama's lead on the way to a first major championship win, Thomas was faced with a ten-foot birdie putt on the par-5 10th hole. The ball tracked its route all the way to the cup before hovering tantalisingly on its edge, seemingly refusing to drop for a birdie four.
A full 12 seconds passed before the ball finally succumbed and let gravity do its work, much to the delight of the watching gallery.
Oosthuizen’s ‘Career Grand Slam’
A battling golfing display by South African Louis Oosthuizen over the four days saw him at one point threatening the lead but, ultimately, coming up short by three shots. This was the fourth time the 2010 Open Champion has finished runner-up (either sole or tied second position) and, amazingly, he managed that feat at each of the four major championships.
Perhaps not quite the personal career grand slam he was looking for, but it reinforces the fact that we could yet see Louis in the major winner’s circle again at some point in the future.
Let's think happy thoughts with this trip down memory lane to Louis' win at St Andrews in 2010:
No missed cut since 2009 for Stricker
This one flew under the radar a little this week but the 12-time PGA Tour event winner Steve Stricker made the weekend to and, in doing so, has gone eight consecutive years without missing a major championship cutline.
Granted he did miss a few Open Championships along the way, but it’s still no mean feat.
We’re pretty sure he would swap them all for having got over the line in just one single major. Unbelievable that he hasn’t managed it – especially given that he is one of the best putters the game has ever seen.
Fancy a Stricker putting ‘top tip’? Check out the video below.
How was your PGA Championship experience? Can Justin Thomas become a multiple major winner? Let us know in the comments below.