Patrick Cantlay produced nerveless golf down the back nine to successfully defend the BMW Championship, and also put himself in prime position to become the first player to defend the Tour Championship.
Cantlay has played steady rather than spectacular golf all season, but at the business end he found the perfect time to win his first individual title of the season (he won the Zurich Classic alongside Xander Schauffele).
The 30-year-old was pushed hard all the way by Scott Stallings, but a birdie on 17 and par on 18 helped him secure the win.
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While victory in its own right was welcome for Cantlay, there were eyes on the Tour Championship and the final 30 for East Lake was decided on Sunday.
World No. 1 Scottie Scheffler will head to the Tour Championship in top spot, and with a two-shot lead over the field.
Aaron Wise got in right on the number, with Shane Lowry the unfortunate player to be one too high.
It was almost a fairytale for Stallings, as his last win came back in 2014 and he had been in the wilderness. But his second-placed finish secures his spot at East Lake.

Tour Championship qualifiers (including starting positions)

  • 1. Scottie Scheffler, 10-under
  • 2. Patrick Cantlay, eight-under
  • 3. Will Zalatoris, seven-under
  • 4. Xander Schauffele, six-under
  • 5. Sam Burns, five-under
  • T6. Cameron Smith, four-under
  • T6. Rory McIlroy, four-under
  • T6. Tony Finau, four-under
  • T6. Sepp Straka, four-under
  • T6. Sungjae Im, four-under
  • T11. Jon Rahm, three-under
  • T11. Scott Stallings, three-under
  • T11. Justin Thomas, three-under
  • T11. Cameron Young, three-under
  • T11. Matt Fitzpatrick, three-under
  • T16. Max Homa, two-under
  • T16. Hideki Maysuyama, two-under
  • T16. Jordan Spieth, two-under
  • T16. Joaquin Niemann, two-under
  • T16. Viktor Hovland, two-under
  • T21. Collin Morikawa, one-under
  • T21. Billy Horschel, one-under
  • T21. Tom Hoge, one-under
  • T21. Brian Harman, one-under
  • T26. KH Lee, level-par
  • T26. JT Poston, level-par
  • T26. Sahith Theegala, level-par
  • T26. Adam Scott, level-par
  • T26. Aaron Wise, level-par
It was a day to forget for Rory McIlroy, who made a superb start to the week but lost momentum after a triple bogey on Thursday and never recovered.
The Irishman’s putter was off colour for most of Sunday, but he birdied his final three holes to finish at nine-under for the tournament.
His focus will not shift to the Tour Championship, but he will start six shots off the pace under the staggered start.

BMW Championship Final Leaderboard

  • 1. Patrick Cantlay,14-under
  • 2. Scott Stallings, 13-under
  • T3. Xander Schauffele, 11-under
  • T3. Scottie Scheffler, 11-under
  • T5. KH Lee, 10-under
  • T5. Corey Conners, 10-under
  • T5. Adam Scott, 10-under
  • T8. Jon Rahm, nine-under
  • T8. Rory McIlroy, nine-under
  • T8. Taylor Pendrith, nine-under
  • T8. Joaquin Niemann, nine-under
Jon Rahm could be a player to watch at East Lake next week, as his game has been trending in the right direction over the past fortnight and he closed with a 67 to get to nine-under.
Viktor Hovland had one of the best rounds of the day, with the highlight of his 65 being a hole in one on the second.
Collin Morikawa had a sorry afternoon, as he four-putted one green and made a 10 on another hole as he finished on one-under after a closing round of 79.
Aaron Wise made double bogey on 15 and bogey on 16, but he held his nerve to make par on 17 and 18 and it was enough to get him into the Tour Championship at 30.
Adam Scott also edged into the top 30 the hard way, as he got up and down from a bunker on 18 to secure his place.
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