SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Hideki Matsuyama was all smiles after winning the Waste Management Phoenix Open on Sunday.
Rickie Fowler broke down into tears.
Taking advantage of two mistakes by Fowler on the par-4, 317-yard 17th hole and overcoming the pro-Fowler crowd, Matsuyama won the tournament that drew a record 618,365 to TPC Scottsdale for the week with a par on the fourth playoff hole.
With the victory, Matsuyama, who will move up from his world ranking of 19, put himself back into the conversation concerning the game’s best young players. The 23-year-old from Japan, who has plenty of firepower and game to be a major presence on the PGA Tour for years to come, birdied the final two holes in regulation to force a playoff with Fowler.
Then the two exchanged pars on the first playoff hole, birdies on the second and pars on the third before Matsuyama put his foe away with a par putt from two feet on the fourth extra hole, that being on the 17th.