Marc Leishman putts his way to victory at Torrey Pines

Rory McIlroy finishes three behind as Kobe Bryant’s death overshadows final round

Marc Leishman was victorious in the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines. Photograph: Sean M. Haffey/Getty

Marc Leishman was victorious in the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines. Photograph: Sean M. Haffey/Getty

 

Australian Marc Leishman putted brilliantly to win the Farmers Insurance Open in San Diego on Sunday when the death of basketball great Kobe Bryant cast a shadow over the final round.

Several of the players competing at Torrey Pines knew Bryant well, notably Tiger Woods.

News of Bryant’s death in a helicopter crash quickly spread around the Torrey Pines course as the round progressed.

Woods, though, was unaware until after the round.

Vying for a record 83rd PGA Tour victory, he shot 70 and finished equal ninth, six strokes behind Leishman, who surged to victory with a seven-under-par 65 despite hitting some awful drives.

The burly Australian’s red-hot putting helped him claim his fifth PGA Tour victory as several players including overnight leader Jon Rahm faltered.

Leishman finished at 15-under 273, one shot ahead of Rahm (70), who regrouped and birdied the final three holes, his long eagle putt at the last coming up just a few inches short.

“I feel pretty lucky I was able to win hitting it in some of the spots I hit it today,” Leishman said.

“This feels pretty amazing. I wasn’t expecting this at the start of the day. (I’m) elated.

“I putted as good as I’ve probably ever putted today. I made some good birdie putts early and then some great par saves later. They’re probably even more important than the early ones.”

Rory McIlroy finished with a round of 69 in San Diego. Photograph: Sean M. Haffey/Getty
Rory McIlroy finished with a round of 69 in San Diego. Photograph: Sean M. Haffey/Getty

Leishman started the round four strokes behind Rahm, who dropped four shots in the first five holes.

Rahm said he would not lose much sleep over his failure to win on Sunday as the death of Bryant and the outbreak of the China’s new coronavirus put things in perspective.

“I was coordinating with a friend to actually meet sometime soon and pick his brain,” said the sombre Spaniard.

“There’s an epidemic going on in China that could potentially kill thousands. Me missing a putt really, really doesn’t matter to me right now.”

Rahm was not the only big name below his best.

Rory McIlroy, with the world number one ranking there for the taking with a win, was never a factor after teeing off three shots behind Rahm.

Three bogeys in the first four holes left the Northern Irishman reeling, though like Rahm he recovered somewhat to shoot 69 and finish equal third with American Brandt Snedeker, three strokes behind Leishman.

McIlroy was also stunned by Bryant’s death.

“First basketball team I really followed were the Lakers,” he said.

Collated final scores & totals in the USPGA Tour Farmers Insurance Open, Torrey Pines GC (USA) unless stated, par 72):

273 Marc Leishman (Aus) 68 72 68 65

274 Jon Rahm (Spa) 68 71 65 70

276 Rory McIlroy (NIrl) 67 73 67 69, Brandt Snedeker 69 67 72 68

277 Tom Hoge 71 71 67 68

278 Tony Finau 70 70 68 70, Bubba Watson 67 73 69 69, Patrick Reed 69 69 70 70

279 Charley Hoffman 69 74 71 65, Tiger Woods 69 71 69 70, Max Homa 73 68 71 67, Harry Higgs 70 68 69 72, Beau Hossler 72 66 73 68, Patrick Rodgers 70 69 72 68

280 Maverick McNealy 71 71 69 69

281 Keegan Bradley 66 72 73 70, Jason Day (Aus) 73 67 72 69, J.B. Holmes 68 69 71 73, Sung Kang (Kor) 69 71 67 74, Cameron Champ 71 68 68 74

282 Matthew Wolff 76 66 71 69, Jason Kokrak 69 74 69 70, Ryan Palmer 72 62 71 77, Tyler McCumber 72 68 68 74, Sebastian Cappelen (Den) 66 71 71 74, Collin Morikawa 70 69 74 69, Russell Knox (Sco) 69 74 69 70, Zac Blair 72 66 72 72, Will Gordon 75 68 69 70

283 Matthew NeSmith 67 70 76 70, Jimmy Walker 71 70 70 72, Kevin Tway 67 74 74 68, J.J. Spaun 73 67 74 69, Jhonattan Vegas (Ven) 69 68 75 71, Mark Anderson 74 66 69 74

284 Luke List 73 70 72 69, Talor Gooch 71 72 72 69, Robby Shelton 71 72 70 71, Jason Dufner 70 71 72 71, Zack Sucher 70 73 69 72, Cameron Percy (Aus) 68 73 74 69, Cameron Davis (Aus) 76 65 69 74, Sungjae Im (Kor) 67 73 71 73, Jamie Lovemark 73 68 69 74

285 Hideki Matsuyama (Jpn) 73 67 74 71, John Huh 70 73 71 71, Joseph Bramlett 71 70 71 73, Kevin Streelman 72 71 68 74

286 Scott Stallings 71 69 74 72, Joaquin Niemann (Chi) 71 70 70 75, Sam Burns 74 69 73 70, Lucas Glover 73 67 73 73, Ryan Brehm 70 72 74 70, Cameron Tringale 68 75 69 74

287 Pat Perez 69 74 70 74, Brandon Wu 68 72 71 76, Stewart Cink 68 71 75 73, Joel Dahmen 67 73 72 75, Grayson Murray 70 73 72 72, Xinjun Zhang (Chn) 67 76 72 72, Ben Taylor (Eng) 71 69 71 76, Martin Laird (Sco) 71 71 72 73, Jordan Spieth 70 70 73 74

288 Doc Redman 70 73 74 71, Aaron Baddeley (Aus) 71 72 69 76, Cameron Smith (Aus) 70 71 74 73, Denny McCarthy 70 71 73 74

289 Byeong-Hun An (Kor) 67 74 77 71, Billy Horschel 68 72 80 69

290 Rhein Gibson (Aus) 69 73 72 76

291 Chase Seiffert 71 71 78 71, Harris English 72 70 74 75

292 Richy Werenski 72 68 78 74, Matt Jones (Aus) 75 68 73 76, Bill Haas 72 70 73 77, Christopher Baker 72 68 74 78, Dylan Frittelli (Rsa) 76 66 77 73

296 Trey Mullinax 77 66 75 78

297 Dominic Bozzelli 68 73 78 78

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