What you missed: All the winners this week have a big thing in common, Tom Watson retires at the Senior Open, and Paul Dunne has the best mistaken identity yet
A big theme of this week’s winners belongs to World No.1: The current standing male World No.1 Brook Koepka earned his first WGC title in Memphis, the first ever World No.1 Bernard Langer claimed his 11th Senior Open title at Royal Lytham & St Annes, Jin Young Ko regained her spot at the top of the world rankings with her second major victory of the year, and the former World No.1 amateur Collin Morikawa won for the first time on the PGA Tour.
Elsewhere, Tom Watson played his final Senior Open, Sergio was filmed taking his anger out again, Lexi Thompson blasted (then deleted) a post about the Evian Championship, and Paul Dunne had a case of mistaken identity… for Shane Lowry.
In addition to that, Brooks Koepka and Bryson DeChambeau both made it known they want more equipment testing throughout the season after the R&A/Schauffele fall out, and there’s a new Ryder Cup venue for 2026.
Read on below to find out what you missed
Brooks Koepka bests McIlroy to win first WGC title
It wasn’t the final round battle fans were hoping for, but instead a dominant performance from the World No.1 as he cruised to a final round five-under 65 and a three stroke victory over Webb Simpson at 16-under-par.
McIlroy had begun the final round one shot clear but was beaten by his playing partner by six shots on Sunday as he finished tied for fourth place on 11-under-par.
“That would have been incredible for the fans, for everybody that showed up and I’m sure that’s what everybody wanted,” Koepka said of the potential Sunday had to be a shootout between the final pairing.
“Rory didn’t play the way he wanted to today, but still it’s so much fun to watch him play. You kind of get glued watching him hit balls. I mean, it’s mesmerising watching him hit. You know it’s always nice to squeak out a victory over probably the best player right now.”
It was Koepka’s seventh PGA Tour victory (third of the year) and first WGC title, all but securing his PGA Tour player of the year honours.
Collin Morikawa earns maiden PGA Tour win
Collin Morikawa birdied his final three holes to earn his maiden PGA Tour title at the Barracuda Championship by three points over Troy Merritt.
The Barracuda Championship was played with a modified stableford format, and a final round 65 gave Morikawa 14-points (two points for each of his seven birdies) to finish on a total of +47 for the week.
“It was something really special to finally get the win,” Morikawa said, who birdied all three of his final holes for victory.
Morikawa’s first birdie of the day came with a 17-foot birdie putt at the sixth, and he added a second at the par-five eight to move closer to Merritt, who looked to be in control by the turn.
But the World No.172 went on a charge, adding gains at the 10th and 14th holes before back to back birdies at the 16th and 17th, which included a 30-footer for birdie to move him in to a one-point lead with one hole to go.
A final hole birdie meant that Merrit would need to try for an eagle at the last if he wanted to win, but his chip rolled 12-feet past the hole and he was unable to get the birdie either, leaving Morikawa with a three-point win for his first title on Tour.
Jin Young Ko relcaimed her World No.1 spot after winning her second major title of the year at the Evian Championship
Ko took advantage of late mistakes from leader Hyo Joo Kim on Sunday as she fired a final-round 67 in wet conditions to win her second major of the year by two-shots at 15-under-par.
“I had really great week,” said Ko. “I played really – not perfect, but a little bit – yeah, little perfect. So I was happy.
Ko started the day four shots behind Kim but quickly moved to within one after the leader dropped a shot on the third and Ko rolled in back-to-back birdies at the fifth and sixth holes.
Kim pulled ahead once more just a hole later, and despite another birdie from Ko at the 10th, Kim regained that two-stroke lead with her own gain on 11, and both players dropped shots at the next to keep the gap at two.
But where Ko recovered, Kim struggled. A birdie at the 13th moved Ko a shot closer once more, and an untimely triple bogey for Kim on the 14th saw a three-shot swing in favour of Ko – giving her a two-shot lead with just four to play.
Ko added a 20-footer for birdie at the 17th to retain a two-shot lead over clubhouse leaders Jennifer Kupcho and Shanshan Feng, and a final-hole birdie from early leader Kim wasn’t enough to undo the damage of the 14th hole, leaving her tied for second at -13.
Bernard Langer claims fourth Senior Open title
Bernard Langer carded a four-under 66 in tough conditions at Royal Lytham and St Annes as he claimed his fourth Senior Open title by two shots over Paul Broadhurst at six-under-par.
The 61 year old became the oldest champion in the tournament’s history on Sunday as he lifted his 11th senior major championship trophy, and was even able to afford two bogeys on his final four holes.
Wet conditions saw lengthy delays, but Langer managed to navigate them well, making six birdies thanks to success on the greens and only dropping two shots over his final four holes.
“It was a wonderful round,” said Langer. “Had it really going, 6-under par for 14 holes and then struggled a bit on the last few, but 15 is almost a par 5 and 17 was just a poor shot. Otherwise, it was a really awesome day. I made a bunch of putts today and avoided making bogeys or worse earlier on.
He has just become the first person to win 11 Senior major titles, and it’s an accolade he sees as incredibly important.
“There’s nobody in the game so far has won more than nine, and this is my 11th, so it means a great deal to have done something that nobody else has done, not even the great Jack Nicklaus or Gary Player, or we can do down a long list, the Tom Watsons and on and on.
“Now having won 11 senior majors, it means a great deal. Nobody has won more than nine if I’m correct, not even the great Jack Nicklaus or Gary Player or Tom Watson who retired from this championship today. There’s a lot of great players who have played this game and have played majors, and I’ve been blessed to have won more than any of them.”
Tom Watson bids farewell to competitive major golf at the Senior Open
Five time Open Champion Tom Watson said his final farewell to competitive major golf at Royal Lytham & St Annes on Sunday with a final-round 74.
The eight-time major winner was giving a wonderful send off after he announced he would retire from competing at this level, at the age of 69, on his 18th Senior Open appearance.
“I’ve thought quite long and hard about the decision I’ve made,” said Watson, who said he will return to next year’s Open in an ambassador role. “It has to do with really a pretty sensible assessment of how I play the game now.
“I just don’t have the tools in the toolbox. I’ve mentioned that before, that sometimes you lose the tools in the toolbox. I just don’t have enough tools in the toolbox to really compete successfully. So, therefore, I’m basically declaring now that this is my last Senior Open Championship, and I’m also going to hang up the spikes in the US Senior Open.
“I’ve had a good career playing professional golf all these years. I’ve run across so many fine people who have helped me and supported me. First of all, my wife who is battling cancer now. It’s going to give me some time to go out and compete with her.”
And despite the bad weather, Watson still paid credit to the crowds that came to greet him.
“The crowds were very warm and appreciative,” said Watson, who never missed the cut in those 18 years of competing.
“There will be other people who will take the reins and they will do what I did. Life is full of passages, and I’ve passed through my career here, starting in 1975 to here in 2019. It’s amazing.”
But while he has closed the book on this part of his life, don’t think it’s the last you’ll see of Watson, who made it clear he still intends to tee up on the PGA Champions Tour occasionally.
Lexi Thompson complains (then deletes) about conditions at Evian Championship
Lexi Thompson missed the cut at the Evian Championship, and had a few things to say about the condition of the course on social media afterwards as she claimed she was ‘thankful’ not to be playing the weekend.
She did later remove the post and posted another, stating her original complaint was borne of frustration and she wanted to clear up any confusion.
“My words were only directed at my frustration of not playing well in a major and at the unfortunate bounces we all get while playing this crazy game of golf,” she wrote in the new post. “I didn’t mean it in a mean way at all. Obviously just hasn’t been the course for me the last few years, but some girls are playing great and I wish them the best of luck this weekend.”
Dunne mistaken for Open Champion Lowry
Shane Lowry may have been the man who won the Open, but that didn’t stop fellow Irish golfer Paul Dunne from reaping the words… through a case of mistaken identity.
They may not look remotely alike, but they both play golf and are Irish, so basically the same thing, right?
“The flight attendant just brought me into the cockpit to meet the two pilots who wanted to congratulate me on winning the Open,” Dunne wrote on twitter. “After correcting them they said they’d been googling it and we look exactly alike!?”
Sergio Garcia loses his temper… Again!
For the second time in as many weeks Garcia has been caught on camera taking his anger out after hitting a bad drive. Just a week after he threw his club at his caddie at The Open, Garcia was caught taking a huge bit of turf out of the teeing area at the WGC FedEx St Jude Invitational. Combined with his DQ earlier in the year for damaging five greens at the Saudi International, his reputation seems to be taking as many hits as the sand in that bunker he thrashed around in in February.
Adare Manor confirmed as 2026 Ryder Cup Venue
Adare Manor has been confirmed for the 2026 Ryder Cup venue as the biennial tournament returns to Ireland for the contest between European and the United States.
Ryder Cup Europe announced the five-star resort will follow in the footsteps of Whistling Straits in Wisconsin (2020), Marco Simone in Italy (2022) and Bethpage Black in New York (2024).
It means The Ryder Cup will be staged in Ireland for the second time, 20 years after The K Club hosted the 2006 contest when Team Europe – under the captaincy of Ian Woosnam and featuring three Irishmen who would go on to captain Europe over the next decade; Darren Clarke, Padraig Harrington and Paul McGinley – memorably defeated the United States by a record margin of 18½ – 9½.
Guy Kinnings, European Ryder Cup Director, said: “We are delighted to announce The 2026 Ryder Cup will be staged in Ireland at Adare Manor which is a world class venue, both in terms of the golf course and the wider resort facilities.”
Koepka, Bryson want more equipment testing
Following the fall-out between Xander Schauffele and the R&A over the random driver testing at the Open, both Brooks Koepka and Bryson DeChambeau came out and voiced their support for more frequent testing of equipment throughout the year.
“The more testing the better,” Koepka said during his press conference at the WGC-FedEx St Jude Invitational this week. “It’s like anything. Drug testing, driver testing, anything. Test as much as you want you’ll figure out where rules are broken, where rules aren’t and who’s broken them. I don’t see any problem with it. It would be good for the game.
“You see guys are switching drivers almost every other other week, you never know if you can find one after hitting it a few times if it’s hot it might be over, you never know. I see no problem with it, it’s a great idea just to add it a couple of random times throughout the year.”
Bryson DeChambeau also welcomed the idea, but said that it should happen to each winner after they finish the tournament. And he also had a radical suggestion for what the punishment should be if the club failed.
“I think we should be tested after every win, or whoever finishes in the top 5 should be tested,” DeChambeau told GOLF.com. “It’s like Nascar. If you win with an illegal driver or something else that’s [non-conforming], I would say don’t take the tournament away, because how is the player supposed to know when he was given the driver in good faith. Maybe it did get hotter over the course of hitting it 500 times, or they have a different way of measuring. There’s a bunch of discrepancies in there.
“If you did play a driver that was illegal, you take some FedEx Cup points away.”