The second leg of the PGA tour’s Asian swing wrapped up late Saturday night for viewers in Canada and the USA. Brooks Koepka did what the big cat Marc Leishman did last week and that is runaway with a tournament which allowed me to get to bed early Saturday night. For his efforts, Koepka won his 12th professional tournament and crossed a 7th country off his list of tournament hosts.
He also took home the CJ Cup trophy which surprisingly is not a cup at all. I was going to rag on the trophy about how can it not be a cup when the tournament is called The CJ Cup. Especially when I got the first glimpse of it and it looked like I couple 9 x 9 pieces of wood glued together and painted but it is actually a pretty cool prize.
The trophy has every player in the fields name engraved in a word search type form (written in Korean) and the winners name is highlighted in gold. Which is pretty cool in my mind compared to some of the trophies out there (cough cough a wooden barrel). Oh, and he also took home 1.7 million for winning.
The cool trophy and the 1.7 mill in the jeans is great, but arguably the most impressive accomplishment Brooks pulled off this week was the wardrobe turnaround. I don’t know who dressed him Thursday, but they need to be fired and that sweater he wore needs to be burned or at least returned to whatever maternity store they got it from. This was an all timer for worst dressed on the PGA tour but good on Brooks, he turned it around and by Sunday was back in his usual slim fit attire to appeal the ladies watching and Bronel.
Close But Not Quite
It is a shame Brooks toyed with the field in the fourth round because it overshadowed a couple major charges and impressive final rounds from Gaaaaaaaarrrrrryyyy Woodland and Ryan Palmer. Woodland was 5 shots back entering Sunday and went out and did his part shooting a 9 under 63, which he probably thought was going to give him a chance when he ended his round. Only to wait an hour or so to find out he was in 2nd and 4 shots behind. Another Top 5 bridesmaid finish for ol Gary.
The Texas Course Horse Ryan Palmer was in a similar situation as Woodland he was sitting 8 shots off the lead and went out and almost tied his personal best round on the PGA tour with a 10 under 62. Only to fall 6 shots short of Koepka. We probably won’t hear much about Palmer until early April now when the PGA tour stops in San Antonio for the Valero Texas open.
There were a couple other notable finishes to briefly touch on this week:
- Rafa Cabrera Bello and his ever-fluctuating style finished T3.
- Canadian Adam Hadwin looks to have righted the ship after missing the cut in his first tournament of the season he bounced back with a T10 finish at The CJ Cup.
- Defending champ Justin Thomas never really got it going this week and finished in a disappointing tie for 36th. 1 stoke better than Web.com tour 2017 money leader Sung-Jae Im and other notable Korean Dong Seop Maeng.
- Jason Dufner’s six fist pumps could only net him a tie for 55th.
- Stewart Cink and his best or worst golfer’s tan depending on how you look at it finished T70 which many would think is a disappointment, but I would imagine Stewart is just fine with it, he has his major win and is now counting down the days until he can rake on the Champions tour (FYI exactly 1600 days until that happens).
- In the thanks for coming out category Hyun-Woo Ryu (no relation to the LA Dodgers Hyun-Jin Ryu) finished dead last and 34 strokes off the lead. THIRTY. FOUR
That about wraps up the CJ Cup recap. Congratulations goes out to Brooks Koepka but I want to finish this recap with something that might be an unpopular opinion but I am going to say it, I wish every tournament was played in the eastern part of Asia because these 2 weeks of watching at night have been a real nice treat. Kids are in bed and the wife isn’t on me to “accomplish” things around the house or “be a good dad” instead of laying on the couch from the hours of 1-4pm Saturday and Sunday. It was nice to just relax and watch some golf before hitting the hay. Would it have been nice to have a competitive round to watch Saturday night….sure, but I don’t want to get greedy.