Bubba Watson joins legends with third victory in Los Angeles

Graeme McDowell’s challenge fades as he cards 77; Rory McIloy closes strongly with 68

 Bubba Watson and caddie Ted Scott celebrate after winning the Genesis Open at Riviera Country Club  in Pacific Palisades, California. Photograph: Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Bubba Watson and caddie Ted Scott celebrate after winning the Genesis Open at Riviera Country Club in Pacific Palisades, California. Photograph: Christian Petersen/Getty Images

 

Bubba Watson holed a bunker shot at the 14th hole to set the stage for a two-stroke triumph at the Genesis Open – and 10th PGA Tour title – in Los Angeles on Sunday.

Watson pulled away with another birdie at the par-five 17th as he shot a closing two-under-par 69 at Riviera.

The long-hitting left-hander finished at 12-under 272 for his third victory at Riviera, after previous successes in 2014 and 2016.

Ben Hogan and Arnold Palmer also won the event, previously known as the Los Angeles Open, three times each.

Fellow Americans Kevin Na and Tony Finau tied for second on 10-under.

A two-times Masters champion, Watson will jump back into the top-50 in the world after starting the week ranked 117th.

Graeme McDowell had started the final round two shots off Watson’s lead. A birdie at the first hole of his final round got him to nine under but it proved a false dawn as he would make two bogeys to the turn and then drop five shots in six holes as he closed with a six-over 77 to finish in a share of 26th position on two under.

Rory McIlroy moved in the other direction as he put in a strong final round of three-under 68 to finish a shot better than McDowell on three under.

Pádraig Harrington closed with a three-over 74 to finish the week on five over par.

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