Matt Kuchar says that he had confidence that he would be able to make the bunker shot that won him the RBC Heritage.
Kuchar, who started the day four shots behind the overnight leader Luke Donald, chipped-in from the bunker on the last hole to secure victory – his first on the tour this season – and says that he felt as if it was always a possibility, before he hit the shot.
“I looked at my caddie, Lance [Bennett], and said, ‘it’s not that bad of a place. I can do something with it," the American told reporters at the event. “I wasn't too disappointed to end up in that front greenside bunker on 18.
"I knew it was a pretty easy up and down. I said 'I'm about due to make one of these' and it was so cool to see that thing disappear at the end."
He also paid tribute to the crowd in South Carolina, likening the atmosphere to that which he experienced at The Masters two weeks ago.
“What an amazing roar,” Kuchar said, about the spectator’s reaction to his decisive chip-in. “That was a full-on Augusta National roar. It’s something I’ll never forget.”
It may have to go down as poetic justice for Kuchar as he has led the last three tour tournaments he has played in going into the final day – before slipping up.
Indeed, in his last appearance, at the Houston Open, he had a lead coming down the 18th only to bogey the hole and then lose in a play-off against Matt Jones.
This time, though, he came from behind to secure his triumph, shooting a seven-under-par score of 64 to make up the four-shot deficit on Donald that he started the day with.
He wasn’t the only person delighted with his long-awaited win, either. Rory McIlroy also took to Twitter to announce his joy that the perma-smiling 35-year-old broke his duck and reigned supreme in South Carolina.
He said, briefly after the close of play: “KUUUUUUUUUUUUCCCCHHHH!!! No one deserves a little luck more than Matt Kuchar these past few weeks!”
One man who was, naturally, much less happy with the American’s success was Donald. The Englishman has now finished in the top three five out of the last six times he has played at this course, but he still waits for an elusive title.
He didn’t do too much wrong this time around, either, but could not hold onto his overnight lead due to the brilliance of Kuchar. Donald managed to shoot a round of 69, two-under-par, to bring his score to ten-under for the week, but it was still not good enough.
“I’m disappointed, obviously, not to have won, usually a solid 69 on a windy day with a two-shot lead is enough to get it done on Sundays," he said.
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