Johnson wins first major title amid rules controversy

Sun Jun 19, 2016 11:08pm EDT
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By Mark Lamport-Stokes

OAKMONT, Pennsylvania (Reuters) - Long-hitting American Dustin Johnson, seeking major redemption after several near-misses in recent years, won the 116th U.S. Open on Sunday amid high drama and initial uncertainty over his victory margin.

In pursuit of his first grand slam crown, the world number six played clutch golf under intense pressure at brutally difficult Oakmont Country Club, finishing in style as he sank a short birdie putt at the last.

Having negotiated the final seven holes under notice that he might be penalized for a rules infraction on the fifth green, despite being cleared by another official at the time, he was docked a shot after the round's completion, with his score amended to a closing 69 for a four-under winning total of 276.

After sinking the final putt to clinch his 10th PGA Tour victory, Johnson pumped his right fist in delight, and then lifted his putter to acknowledge the loud roars from the crowd before being embraced by his caddie.

"Feels good, feels really good, feels well deserved," an emotional Johnson said after finishing three shots in front of fellow Americans Jim Furyk (66) and Scott Piercy (69), and Ireland's Shane Lowry (76).

Lowry had been four ahead after the weather-delayed third round was completed earlier on Sunday but he struggled in the conditions while piling up seven bogeys.

"I've had a lot of opportunities that I didn't quite get done, so this one's definitely really sweet," said Johnson. "I knew I was swinging well, and I just kept thinking, it's just me and the course.

"I'm playing against the course. I can't control what anyone else does. So I just tried to hit golf shots, tried to hit it on the correct side of the hole, and two-putt."   Continued...

Jun 19, 2016; Oakmont, PA, USA; Dustin Johnson holds up the championship trophy after winning the U.S. Open golf tournament at Oakmont Country Club. Mandatory Credit: Michael Madrid-USA TODAY Sports