Scottie Scheffler wins Arnold Palmer Invitational, news, scores, results, Players Championship

World number one Scottie Scheffler cruised to a five-stroke victory on Sunday at the PGA Arnold Palmer Invitational to capture his first tour victory in nearly a year and a $4m USD winner’s prize.

Scheffler, the 2022 Masters champion, fired a bogey-free six-under par 66 to finish 72 holes on 15-under 273 at Bay Hill in Orlando, Florida.

That was enough to defeat reigning US Open champion Wyndham Clark, the runner-up on 278 after a closing 70, with Ireland’s Shane Lowry, the 2019 British Open champion, third on 279 after a closing 72.

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It was Scheffler’s seventh career PGA Tour triumph and his first since last year’s Players Championship — a title he will try to defend this weekend. While he’s racked up a host of top-ten finishes in the last year, putting woes have cost him title after title.

But at the Arnold Palmer, he switched to a new mallet-type putter and it paid off with a five-shot victory, the largest gap at Bay Hill since Tiger Woods in 2012.

“I played a good round of golf,” Scheffler said. “Got off to a good start and just did my best to keep things rolling.

“As we made the turn on the back nine, I knew I had a few shots lead. I didn’t look at many leaderboards. I stayed in my own little space and just tried to keep pushing.”

Scheffler celebrates his drought-breaking win.Source: Getty Images

Scheffler matched the low round of the week and the 27-year-old American became the first reigning world number one to win at Bay Hill since Tiger Woods in 2009.

“Hat’s off to Scottie,” Clark said. “He’s the best player in the world right now and that’s what the best players in the world do, they shoot 66 in a final round.”

“It would be borderline unfair if he starts putting really good,” Clark said. “If he starts putting positive each week he’s going to be really hard to beat.

“Scottie should win almost every year here. With his ball striking, this golf course is so demanding tee to green and he’s been the best last few years in that category, so I’m not shocked.”

“There’s probably only a couple of players in the world that can live with him playing like that,” Shane Lowry said. “Not sure I’m one of them.”

Scottie Scheffler of the United States hugs his father Scott after the momentous win.Source: Getty Images

Rory McIlroy said: “Being as consistent as Scottie has been is really, really difficult in this game.

“Anyone can pop up and win an event here or there or get on a good run, but the consistent performances that Scottie’s been putting in week in and week out every time he tees it up, it is incredible.

“This is a super-tough golf course and to be six under today, going out with the lead and lapping the field is, it’s super-impressive. But we all knew that he had this in him. His ball-striking is, honestly, on another level compared to everyone else right now. We knew if he started to hole putts, then this sort of stuff would happen.”

Through the past 12 months, Scheffler said he wasn’t frustrated by his win drought.

“Just stuck with my process,” he said. “Had a good couple off weeks with friends at home to kind of reset. Going into this week I tried to have a good attitude.”

Now he has a boost of confidence heading into his bid for a Players repeat after his second Palmer crown in three seasons.

“Any time you can win Arnie’s tournament it’s pretty special,” Scheffler said of the event’s legendary namesake. “He meant a lot to the game of golf. It’s truly an honour to win here.”

Scheffler paid tribute to Arnold Palmer after winning the tournament dedicated to the legendary player.Source: Getty Images

Scheffler began the day sharing the lead with Lowry, but the Irishman began with back-to-back bogeys.

Scheffler birdied the first hole on a putt from just outside 12 feet, sank a seven-foot birdie putt at the par-5 sixth and birdied the 10th from just outside eight feet to surge ahead by four over Clark.

When he birdied the 11th from just beyond six feet, Scheffler stretched his lead to five strokes.

Scheffler added a 34-foot birdie putt at the 15th to reach 14-under and lead by six with no rival able to muster any credible charge down the stretch.

Both Clark and Scheffler birdied the par-5 16th and while Clark added a birdie at 18, it only trimmed Scheffler’s victory margin.

“I’m super pleased,” Clark said. “Obviously coming up short is always a bummer. I have not always loved this golf course and haven’t played well here and I said to myself this week a top 5 or top 10 here would just be a huge for me. So I think it’s just a testament to where my game is at and how much I’ve grown.”

Rory becomes first to drive 10th hole! | 00:16

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