Matsuyama wins title in Japan

2014-11-23 13:11
Hideki Matsuyama (AFP)

Tokyo - Hideki Matsuyama has won the Dunlop Phoenix tournament on his return to Japan after winning a playoff following a dramatic final round on Sunday.

Overnight leader Matsuyama, who captured his maiden victory on the US PGA Tour earlier this season, won on the first extra hole after countryman Hiroshi Iwata had forced a playoff with a blazing round of 63 at the shoreline course in Miyazaki, on the western tip of Japan.

Beginning the day with a two-shot lead, the 22-year-old Matsuyama closed with a one-under-par 70 after birdying the final two holes for a 15-under total of 269.

Iwata self-destructed in the playoff, taking six shots to reach the green and leaving Matsuyama to complete formalities.

American supernova Jordan Spieth, who finished joint runner-up to Bubba Watson at this year's US Masters, finished in a tie for third on 14 under at the $1.7 million tournament after a round of 69.

Matsuyama, who earned $340 000, joins an illustrious roll-call of former winners including Tiger Woods (2004-05), Tom Watson (1980, 1997) and Seve Ballesteros (1977, 1981).

Australia's Brendan Jones tied for third with Spieth after shooting a 68 while South Korea's Hur In-Hoi claimed fifth on 12 under par after a 69.

Japanese media darling Ryo Ishikawa, once dubbed the country's answer to Tiger Woods, showed he was still struggling to rediscover his best form, finishing tied for 31st after a 71 gave him a one-under total of 283.

Leading final-round scores at the Dunlop Phoenix men's tournament at the par-71 Phoenix Country Club in Miyazaki, Japan on Sunday:
269 - Hideki Matsuyama (JPN) 68-64-67-70, Hiroshi Iwata (JPN) 68-69-69-63 (Matsuyama won on a playoff)
270 - Jordan Spieth (USA) 69-64-68-69, Brendan Jones (AUS) 65-69-68-68
272 - Hur In-Hoi (KOR) 67-66-70-69
273 - Toshinori Muto 68-69-68-68, Yusaku Miyazato 68-72-69-64
274 - Chris Stroud (USA) 67-70-71-66
276 - Shingo Katayama (JPN) 70-66-73-67, Tadahiro Takayama (JPN) 74-66-70-66
277 - Brad Kennedy (AUS) 70-68-69-70, Komei Oda 66-71-68-72, Yuki Inamori (JPN) 64-74-68-71
278 - Cho Min-Gyu (KOR) 69-68-69-72, Hiroyuki Fujita (JPN) 70-71-68-69
279 - Kim Hyung-Sung (KOR) 68-71-71-69
280 - Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano (ESP) 74-69-68-69
281 - David Smail (AUS) 69-67-70-75, Steven Conran (AUS) 67-71-72-71, Prayad Marksaeng (THA) 70-71-71-69

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