Published: Tue, August 29, 2017
Sport | By Fredrick Flores

Dustin Johnson Tops Jordan Spieth in Sunday Playoff at Northern Trust Open

Dustin Johnson Tops Jordan Spieth in Sunday Playoff at Northern Trust Open

Dustin Johnson had to hole a tough par putt on the 72nd hole to force a playoff against Open champion Jordan Spieth.

A bogey-free 65 from Vegas set the early clubhouse target at nine under, matched by Jon Rahm after the Spaniard's 68, with Paul Casey claiming outright fifth despite a one-over 71. My battling qualities, that's all I really have right now.

After a quiet summer, Johnson stamped his authority with a closing 66 for 13-under-par 267 in the first of the PGA Tour's four FedExCup playoff events.

Spieth began the back nine with five straight birdies, matching his longest birdie streak on the PGA Tour.

Poulter wasn't the only pro to complain about the playoff being played on the 18th hole.

Until the injury, he'd been on a roll in 2017, winning three tournaments to ascend to the top of the rankings. "I feel like the game is finally back in form like it was before the Masters", he said. "I'm swinging everything really well, got a lot of control over the golf ball and I'm feeling really good".

"A lot of my wins, usually I've just had to, like, two-putt on 18 or had an easy go at it", Johnson admitted. He now maintains a 595-point edge over Spieth, with Justin Thomas, Hideki Matsuyama and Jon Rahm rounding out the top five.

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Johnson demonstrated the lethal power that ranks him No.1 on Tour for driving distance when he nailed a 341-yard (311-metre) drive on an aggressive line over the water hazard and onto the fairway on the par-4 18th during sudden-death. The last time Simpson posted top-10 results in consecutive starts was in 2013-14 when he had four-in-a-row (2013 TOUR Championship/4th, 2013 Shriners Hospitals for Children Open/1, 2013 The RSM Classic/T7, 2014 Sentry Tournament of Champions/T3).

Jason Day finished the best of the Australians in NY after a final round 67 and will be keen to get to Boston next week.

Geoff Ogilvy's tie for 40th was the next best of the Australians who made the weekend in NY, but wasnt enough to extend his playoff run, finishing outside the required top 100 on the FedEx Cup standings to earn a place in Boston next week. "The fans like me, and I hope they continue to like me, because if they don't, that's not any fun for sure because they can be mean". After he sliced his drive up the hill and into a nasty lie in the rough, he chose to lay up instead of trying to hammer a shot to an elevated green. I was hitting so good so I knew I could win if I kept doing that and thankfully it worked out. He finished T3 at THE NORTHERN TRUST to move from No. 6 to No. 5 in the standings.

On Sunday, he again saw a five-stroke lead evaporate, again with a tee shot that landed in the water. "A few little things happen - momentum changes, you hole a few more putts, you gain a little bit more confidence - and then you're starting to get the roll going". Spieth's 7-iron approach landed on the back fringe, and he missed his 25-foot birdie putt. They were tied on the par-three 17th when both found a bunker, and Johnson blasted out to four feet.

No one else really had a chance. Four strokes behind leaders Nicole Broch Larsen and Mo Martin entering the round, Park finished at 13-under 271. The same goes for Hideki Matsuyama, who had some close calls in the majors, but hasn't gotten the job done yet.

The top 100 advanced to the FedEx Cup's next playoff round at TPC Boston this week.

Bubba Watson shot a 70 and tied for 10th, to become one of eight players to qualify for the second playoff event all 11 years of the FedEx Cup.

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