A one-shot victory at the Farmers Insurance Open last Sunday earned for Bubba Watson his second PGA Tour title, following the unsuccessful charges of Venezuelan Jhonattan Vegas and fellow American Phil Mickelson.
Left-handed Watson closed with a five-under-par 67 after he birdied the par-five, keeping his challengers at bay on Torrey Pines’ tricky course.
The long-hitting 32-year-old won the Travelers Championship last year. When asked if last year’s victory helped him at Torrey Pines this year, he said “No. It’s hard every time you look at it.”
“It means a lot,” a tearful Watson, whose father Gerry died late last year after a lengthy battle with lung cancer, said greenside. “My dad is not here. Mom, I love you.”
“You’ve got Phil, you’ve got the guy who won last week, Vegas. All I thought about today was keeping my head down. And I did that.”
Watson was referring to Phil Mickelson, a three-time champion here, who closed with a 69 to secure second place.
This is the first event this year for six-time winner Tiger Woods but his erratic three-over 75 ended a frustrating week, earning for him the 44th place.
The game was actually a duel for supremacy between two left-handers Mickelson and Watson. The latter reached the turn one stroke clear at 13 under overall after he birdied the par-five ninth.
Watson made a two-shot swing on the hole as he rolled in a 12-foot birdie putt, while Vegas bogeyed the par-three 11thg after three-putting.
This is only the sixth appearance of Vegas on the PGA Tour and his bold bid to win consecutive US circuit titles ended at the last.