Amid clouds, thunder and lightning on the horizon, Dustin Johnson was in complete control of his game with a performance worthy of his return to No. 1 in the world.
Johnson capped off his dominant week at the PGA Tour’s Northern Trust on Sunday with an 8-under-par 63, finishing with a tap-in birdie in the dark following a storm delay for an 11-shot victory at the TPC Boston.
It was the largest margin of victory since Phil Mickelson won by 13 at the TPC Sugarloaf in 2006.
“The best I’ve ever seen him look,” said Claude Harmon III, his swing coach, as he stood off the 18th green.
Johnson hit every green in regulation Sunday, and missed only three greens over his last 54 holes. His final 54 holes were rounds of 60-64-63.
Johnson won for the 22nd time in his career, and he never made it look easier. He finished at 30-under 254, making him only the third player in PGA Tour history to finish at 30-under or better. He missed the record, set by Ernie Els in 2003 at Kapalua, by one shot. Jordan Spieth also was 30-under at Kapalua in 2016. Johnson at least holds the record on the mainland.
“I knew I was playing well and I knew the guys were going to shoot low,” Johnson said. “I was trying to get to 30-under. … I’ve never shot 30-under in four rounds. Just something that I wanted to do.”
Harris English figured that out early when he trailed by five shots at the start of the final round, shot 32 on the front nine and fell seven shots behind.
“Kind of had my own tournament that I was playing,” English said. “I mean, really, the goal starting today wasn’t necessarily to win. It was to put myself in position to have a run in the FedEx Cup. That’s why we’re all here.”
English did the job, With a bogey in the dark that didn’t matter at the end, he shot 69 to finish alone in second and moved to No. 6 in the FedEx Cup, securing his place among the top 30 who go to East Lake for the Tour Championship. English started the year with only partial status.
Tiger Woods opened with four straight birdies and had to settle for a 66 to tie for 58th. He fell to No. 57 in the FedEx Cup, in danger of missing the Tour Championship for the second straight year.
Women’s British Open: Sophia Popov won the Women’s British Open at Royal Troon in Scotland to become the first female German major champion, a stunning breakthrough for the 304th-ranked player in the world. Popov had five birdies in a round of 3-under 68 to finish at 7- under, two strokes ahead of Jasmine Suwannapura.
Popov, who wiped tears from her eyes after her win, had lost her LPGA Tour card last year and only qualified for the Women’s British Open with a top-10 finish two weeks ago at the Marathon Classic, an event she was playing only because higher-ranked players couldn’t compete because of coronavirus restrictions.