Johnson and Dufner clinch comeback win in perfect style

Sun Oct 6, 2013 6:52am EDT
 
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By Simon Evans

DUBLIN, Ohio (Reuters) - Zach Johnson holed a spectacular 115-yard wedge shot for eagle to secure a comeback victory with Jason Dufner against Internationals Marc Leishman and Richard Sterne at the Presidents Cup on Saturday.

The 4&3 win was the only match in the fourth session of the biennial team competition to finish on a rain-affected day and helped push the United States into a strong lead by 11-1/2 points to 6-1/2 at Muirfield Village.

Dufner and Johnson had bogeyed the fourth to fall behind early on in their foursomes match and the Australian-South African combination then made a birdie at the par-four sixth to go two-up.

But birdies at the eighth, ninth and 11th holes gave the U.S. pair the lead and they ended up winning the last three holes, with Johnson holing out from the fairway for eagle at the par-five 15th.

Johnson modestly put his shot down to luck and also praised Dufner for the lay-up in the alternate-shot format after he had earlier driven into the rough.

"You're just trying to hit a quality shot and it seemed like Duf was going to hole out three times," said Johnson. "In about a three or four‑hole stretch, his ballmarks were in a three‑foot circle next to the hole.

"I guess if you just keep knocking on that door, maybe one is going to fall. There is a lot of luck involved. You can't deny that. It was a perfect number and I'm not embellishing because ‑ the greens are so saturated that it was a half‑shot.

"It was one of those shots, I could have got my 54‑degree sand wedge there, but it would have spun, a lot. So it was kind of just a chip wedge that took spin off and landed right next to the pin and dropped," added the 2007 Masters champion.   Continued...

 
Jason Dufner (L) of the U.S. shakes hands with Adam Scott (R) of Australia as Zach Johnson of the U.S. shakes hands with Hideki Matsuyama of Japan after the International team of Scott and Matsuyama won their rain-delayed foursome match at the 2013 Presidents Cup golf tournament at Muirfield Village Golf Club in Dublin, Ohio October 5, 2013. REUTERS/Jeff Haynes (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT GOLF)