Martin Kaymer wins at TCP Sawgrass after dramatic final days play
German won by one stroke from Jim Furyk
Rain delay meant Kaymer was playing in the dark by the time he finished his round
Martin Kaymer overcame adverse weather and fading light to secure his first tour triumph since 2011 at The Players Championship at TCP Sawgrass.
The 29-year-old German was on the 14th green and three shots ahead of second-placed Jim Furyk at 15-under-par when play was suspended due to heavy rain and thunder late on Sunday.
A double bogey on the 15th when play resumed 90 minutes later, however, made for a tense finish.
But Kaymer held par and his nerve with a monster putt on the 17th, a score he matched at the 18th as darkness descended to secure a 13-under-par one shot victory.
“It was difficult to come back after a little break,” he told Sky Sports as he reached the clubhouse.
“You are really disappointed when they call it … and then you’re a little cold.”
“I made a couple of wrong decisions on 15 and 16 but what a putt on 17.”
Kaymer had golf’s led “fifth major” all week having carded a record equaling round of 63 on Thursday.
But he was clawed back by the young American, Jordan Spieth, on Saturday and the pair started level on Sunday at 13-under-par.
Spieth, who lit up the Masters where he finished in a tie for second earlier this year, had not dropped a shot all week on the challenging TPC Sawgrass course but came unstuck at the fifth hole Sunday where he carded his first bogey.
The 20-year-old Texan then dropped two further shots on the eighth and the tenth and appeared to grow frustrated as the day wore on, falling away to finish in a tie for fourth with England’s Justin Rose.
Furyk was coolness personified by comparison, shooting six birdies in a round of 66 to move into second place give himself a chance at 12-under-par as Kaymer headed back out onto the course.
Alas, it was not to be as Kaymer held his nerve to take the TCP glass trophy and $1.8 million first prize.
Spieth’s disappointing final round meant Spain’s Sergio Garcia was able to sneak into third position with a birdie at the last.
Elsewhere, Adam Scott failed to overtake Tiger Woods atop the world rankings after a final round of 73 ensured he finished outside the top 30.
The Australian required at least a top 16 finish to become world No. 1 this week but will now likely claim the top spot next week without playing due to the way the rankings are calculated.