Golf-Steele wins LIV Adelaide, Smith leads Ripper to team title in playoff


(Reuters) – American Brendan Steele took the individual honours ahead of Louis Oosthuizen at LIV Golf Adelaide on Sunday as Cameron Smith sent local fans into a frenzy by leading the Australian Ripper quartet to the team title in a playoff.

Overnight leader after a sizzling eight-under-par 64 in Saturday’s second round, Steele kept his nerve to back up with a final-round 68 and win the $20 million event by a stroke on 18-under.

The 41-year-old Californian, three times a winner on the PGA Tour before his defection to LIV, suffered a setback with a bogey at the third, but five straight birdies before the turn gave him just enough of a cushion to get across the line.

“This is amazing, it’s just been fantastic,” Steele said greenside.

“I knew there was going to be hard moments today, regardless of the result, and I just needed to get back in there and start playing with freedom again.”

Former British Open champion Oosthuizen pressed hard for his first individual title on the breakaway circuit, but his seven-birdie 65 was only good enough for second place.

Twice major winner Jon Rahm fired by an eagle at the par-five seventh, shot a final-round 64 and shared third place on 16-under with Charl Schwartzel (64), Dean Burmester (67), Andy Ogletree (65) and Joaquin Niemann (66).

Burmester and Schwartzel both play for Oosthuizen’s all-South African Stinger GC, who finished level with Ripper GC on 53-under to force the first playoff for the team title at an LIV Golf event.

Oosthuizen and Burmester both missed seven-foot birdie putts at the first playoff hole to let the Australians off the hook, and Smith and Marc Leishman secured the team title the second time around when the South Africans both found the sand.

“This is unreal, this is a dream come true for us. We’ve been talking about it all year,” said former British Open champion Smith.

The Grange Golf Club’s par-three 12th hole, which witnessed some wild scenes when the event made its debut last year, was again the viewing position of choice for the most raucous fans.

Lucas Herbert’s caddie Nick Pugh was hit in the back by a full water bottle as they celebrated a birdie by the Australian on Saturday.

“He could have been a lot more upset with it, but he took it really well,” Herbert told reporters.

“It’s probably difficult to request someone who has had 15 beers to aim a water bottle away from someone. That’s maybe asking too much.”

(Reporting by Nick Mulvenney; Editing by William Mallard)

Brought to you by

Submit a Comment