RBC Heritage: Graeme McDowell beats Webb Simpson at the first extra hole
Last Updated: 22/04/13 3:08pm
Graeme McDowell: Had started his final round four shots back of overnight leader Charley Hoffman
Graeme McDowell got the better of Webb Simpson in a play-off between two US Open champions to win the RBC Heritage at a windy Hilton Head.
A par at the first extra hole was enough for McDowell after his rival's birdie putt from off the green was blown well beyond the hole just as it seemed to have stopped dead.
"I'm disappointed for Webb there. He hit a great first putt on this play-off hole but he got a terrible gust of wind that took it another three or four feet."
Simpson then missed his attempt for a four, handing the Northern Irishman - who had started Sunday's play four shots back of overnight leader Charley Hoffman - his second PGA Tour victory.
"I played nicely, I played nicely all week," said McDowell.
"It's a great golf course around here. I sat around with Jim Furyk earlier this week at a Q&A and he said you're never out of this tournament, you just have to hang around. I did that.
"I'm disappointed for Webb there. He hit a great first putt on this play-off hole but he got a terrible gust of wind that took it another three or four feet. That was the way it was today - really tricky and gusty."
Mastering those blowy conditions, McDowell had looked set to clinch victory in regulation when he birdied the 16th to move to 10 under. However, he handed that shot back with a bogey at the last, meaning he signed for a 69.
His error opened the door for Simpson if he could make a birdie at the last, but his effort slipped by the hole after he had hit a solid approach into the green with a six iron.
(US unless stated)
-9 G McDowell (NI) *
-9 W Simpson
-7 L Donald (Eng)
-7 K Streelman
-6 J Kelly
Click HERE for collated scores
Luke Donald finished his week with a two-under score of 69; he started off in superb fashion with four birdies in his opening six holes to go out in 32, only to falter after the turn.
Although he did pick up another birdie at the 11th, three bogeys from then on in meant the Englishman had settle for a share of third place with American Kevin Streelman (72) on seven under par.
Hoffman, who owned a two-shot lead after the third round, saw his hopes blown away on the back nine, starting with a bogey at the 12th. He followed that up by dropping two more shots at the 14th after his tee shot found water.
Back-to-back bogeys to finish meant Hoffman carded a 77, leaving him in a tie for sixth with Russell Henley (69) and Chris Stroud (70). Jerry Kelly sat just above his fellow Americans on six under after a see-saw 71 that included three bogeys in his final four holes.