It's the joy of six for Bryson DeChambeau in 120th US Open
American turns last day at Winged Foot into a title procession
Fourteen years after the US Open went to the wire at Winged Foot and ended in bitter disappointment for Colin Montgomerie, this one fizzled out long before the denouement.
Credit for that must go to Bryson DeChambeau, who had the event's 120th staging wrapped up with seven holes to play at the Mamaroneck venue after moving three shots clear of overnight leader Matthew Wolff.
It was a brilliant last-day performance from DeChambeau as he became golf's fourth first-time major winner since the sport came out of its Covid-19 lockdown behind closed doors.
The 27-year-old, who went up by two shirt sizes and became 40 pounds bigger as he bulked up during that enforced lay-off, simply overpowered one of the toughest courses in major golf.
He stormed to the turn in 33, three-under, in the final round, rolling in a 30-footer for an eagle-3 at the ninth to really get his tail up as things got down to the nitty gritty in the season's second major.
Wolff, who was bidding to become the first player to land this title at the first attempt in more than 100 years, followed him in there to turn for home just one behind, but a two-horse race soon turned into a one-man show.
As Wolff's challenge wilted with bogeys at the tenth and 14th before falling six shots behind following a double-bogey at the 16th, DeChambeau delivered the goods in style.
His brilliant three-under 67 was the sole sub-par round on the last day, the only player to achieve that feat since Jack Fleck came out on top against Ben Hogan in 1955 at the Olympic Club in San Francisco.
It gave him a six-under-par 274 total and a six-shot victory, becoming the just the 12th player and first since Tiger Woods to win both the US Amateur and US Open. He also joined Woods and Jack Nicklaus in being the only players to claim those crowns and also a NCAA title.
"It is a just an honour," said DeChambeau, who has used a scientific approach with every aspect of his game to become the latest member of golf's major champions' club, of that feat.
"After making my eagle at the ninth, I thought it could become a reality, but I had to keep myself focussed on the back nine and execute every shot as best as I possibly could."
He did that right to the bitter end, holing a curling par putt at the last to close out a hugely-impressive display as he joined Collin Morikawa (US PGA), Sophia Popov (AIG Women's Open) and Mirim Lee (ANA Inspiration) as a first-time major winner in 2020.
In an event that saw DeChambeau finish as the only player in red figures, Wolff had to settle for second on level-par after a 75, with South African Louis Oosthuizen signing off with a 73 to end up in third spot on two-over.
Whether it would have made any difference in the end, horror starts by Rory McIlroy, Harris English and Hideki Matsuyama as they all opened with a double-bogey 6 effectively killed off their hopes of mounting a last-day challenge before they'd even had a chance of landing a glove on the leaders.
McIlroy, whose tail was up after a third-round 68, four-putted from the front of the first green and, in a flash, his hopes of repeating a 2011 triumph in this event at Congressional had gone down the drain. A closing 75 left him having to settle for joint-eighth on five-over. "Just a tough day," said the four-time major winner afterwards.
English, who lost his ball in the left rough off the first tee, recovered manfully to card a 73 as he finished fourth on three-over, but it was a slog from start to finish for Matsuyama as his hopes of becoming Japan's first men's major winner died with a 78.
Dustin Johnson cemented his position as world No 1 by finishing in a tie for sixth on five-over after a closing 70 while top-ranked Scot Bob MacIntyre ended up in a tie for 56th on 21-over following a 79.
A message from the Editor:
Thank you for reading this story on our website. While I have your attention, I also have an important request to make of you.With the coronavirus lockdown having a major impact on many of our advertisers - and consequently the revenue we receive - we are more reliant than ever on you taking out a digital subscription.Subscribe to scotsman.com and enjoy unlimited access to Scottish news and information online and on our app. With a digital subscription, you can read more than 5 articles, see fewer ads, enjoy faster load times, and get access to exclusive newsletters and content. Visit https://www.u2swisshome.com/subscriptions now to sign up.
Our journalism costs money and we rely on advertising, print and digital revenues to help to support them. By supporting us, we are able to support you in providing trusted, fact-checked content for this website.
Joy YatesEditorial Director