Thomas Detry's late birdie assured him of a top-4 finish and an invitation to Masters

PTI | Louisville | Updated: 20-05-2024 09:43 IST | Created: 20-05-2024 09:43 IST
Thomas Detry's late birdie assured him of a top-4 finish and an invitation to Masters
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Thomas Detry's 12-footer for birdie on the par-5 18th at the PGA Championship did more than assure the 31-year-old of his best finish in a major.

It also carried him all the way to Augusta National.

Detry's closing 5-under 66 — capped by that testy birdie — left him at 15 under for the tournament and a tie for fourth with Collin Morikawa. It also guaranteed him an invitation to the Masters for the first time next spring.

The world's 55th-ranked player came to Valhalla with a spotty record on golf's biggest stage. He arrived at Valhalla having made the cut just four times in seven previous attempts, his best result a 13th in the British Open at Royal Liverpool last summer.

Four steady days in Kentucky changed all that.

Dean Burmester, a LIV Tour regular, shot a 1-under 70 to finish tied for 12th at 12 under, a finish that means Burmester will be in North Carolina next May when the PGA moves to Quail Hollow.

It also validated the PGA of America's decision to extend Burmester — who came in ranked 133 in the world — an invitation, based in part on his victory in the South African Open on the European tour last December.

Lee Hodges fought off kidney stones to also tie for 12th and earn a spot at Quail Hollow.

JT'S HOMECOMING Justin Thomas' first PGA in his hometown didn't end with a victory. Instead, the two-time PGA champion had to settle for a tie for eighth despite breaking 70 in all four rounds and the fact that he's playing "really, really, really good golf." This trip to Valhalla could also be the last for one of golf's four majors. Eight of the next 10 PGA sites are spoken for, and Valhalla isn't among them.

Selfishly, Thomas hopes the tournament can find its way back to Kentucky.

"I just think that the Midwest has very, very passionate sports fans and they love getting to go watch golf tournaments and I think Louisville shows out when they have the opportunity to," Thomas said. "And they did this week." KOEPKA FRUSTRATED Defending champion Brooks Koepka's bid to win consecutive PGAs for a second time in his career never materialized. He entered the weekend in contention before a sloppy 3-over 74 on Saturday pushed him to the middle of the pack. While Koepka rallied with a 5-under 66 on Sunday to finish in a tie for 26th at 9 under, he wasn't exactly thrilled.

"I don't think finishing (26th) is progress," Koepka said. "Played good today, played good the other two days. (Saturday) just didn't have anything. Was kind of disappointed with the way I finished." LOW PRO Five years after a serious car accident forced him to take an extended sabbatical and put his career in jeopardy, Braden Shattuck held his own against the best in the world this weekend.

The 29-year-old shot a 1-under 283 over four days at Valhalla, the best finish among the 21 club pros who made their way to the eastern Louisville suburbs. "This is the first cut I've made on the PGA Tour and I just happened to do it in a major," said Shattuck, the head pro at Rolling Green Golf Club, about 10 miles west of downtown Philadelphia. "I couldn't do it in the opposite field events, but I did it this week. So it was an amazing week to see what the weekend was like." Just don't expect Shattuck to try to see if he can do it again at Pinehurst next month during the U.S. Open. He passed on qualifying for golf's third major of the year, though he has a pretty good reason.

"I couldn't make any of the dates work because I'm getting married that week," said Shattuck, who earned just under $23,000 at the tournament. "So more important things." RAISE A TOSTIAlejandro Tosti needed 284 shots to get through four days of golf at the PGA, way more required to be in contention.

Still, the Argentinian found a way to leave an impression at Valhalla. Tosti was the only player to successfully drive the downhill 338-yard par-4 13th when his tee shot Sunday landed on the island green and rolled to within 6 feet of the pin. He calmly rolled in the ensuing putt for the rarest kind of par-4 eagle, the kind where the second shot isn't with an iron, but the shortest club in the bag.

Jordan Spieth attempted to match Tosti later in the day only to have his drive splash into the creek that runs in front of the green.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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