Published: Thu, May 18, 2017
Sport | By Noel Norman

Si Woo Kim exits AT&T Byron Nelson with back injury


Only last month, he thought he has lost his PGA Tour card only for a miscalculation in his earnings due to a medical dispensation.

The smart money, if an worldwide player overtook American co-leaders J.B. Holmes and Kyle Stanley, was on veterans such as Poulter, Oosthuizen, Adam Scott (the previous youngest victor, at 23 in 2004) or Masters champion Sergio Garcia. He was the only player who didn't commit a bogey in the final round.

After his victory in the Wyndham Championship last year, Kim is the fourth player in the last 25 years to win twice on the PGA Tour before the age of 22, following in the footsteps of Tiger Woods, Sergio Garcia and Jordan Spieth. "I'm just so excited to be the champion".

Ian Poulter is looking forward to getting back to the revamped Wentworth when he tees it up in next week's BMW PGA Championship.

Kim Si-woo of South Korea celebrates after winning the Players Championship at TPC at Sawgrass in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, on Sunday. At 21 years, 10 months and 16 days, Kim is the youngest victor of the tournament considered the fifth major on the PGA Tour.

"The moment I was leading, I was very confident", he said.

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"While I was practicing with him, he taught me about the course at the Stadium", Kim said.

This win sees him move 45 places up the world rankings to a career high 28th. Carding a 10-under 278 overall, he finished three strokes ahead of co-runners-up Ian Poulter of England and Louis Oosthuizen of South Africa.

Kim didn't make things easy for himself, hitting only eight greens in regulation. He came to the perilous par-3 17th with a two-shot lead, calmly found the middle of the green and two-putted and then he played a solid drive down the centre of the 18th fairway.

Kim cashed in the US$1.89 million winner's check, one of the largest on the tour, behind only major championships such as the U.S. Open and the Masters. Kim jumped up in the money list from 114th to 13th as a result.

Unfortunately for Kim, winning the PGA Tour's flagship event does not bring an exemption.

A player of Korean descent has now won on Tour in every season since 2005, with Kim's victory this year joining K.J. Choi (8), Y.E. Yang (2), Sangmoon Bae (2), James Hahn (2), Kevin Na (1), Seung-Yul Noh (1), Danny Lee (1) and his own last year.

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