It was a historic FedEx Cup title victory for Rory McIlroy on Sunday at the Tour Championship.
McIlroy has been busy leading the charge — along with Tiger Woods — for massive changes in the game as the PGA Tour attempts to stave off further defections to LIV Golf. That he could play as well as he did this week is nothing short of incredible.
McIlroy faced adversity at the start and end of this weekend’s Tour Championship at East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta. At the end, all he needed was a 2-inch putt to card a final score of 21 under par and stave off Scottie Scheffler and Sungjae Im (-20) for the victory:
The winning moment for @McIlroyRory 🏆 pic.twitter.com/kW541guw2z
— PGA TOUR (@PGATOUR) August 28, 2022
The Sporting News takes a look at the numbers behind McIlroy’s memorable victory:
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McIlroy found himself six strokes behind Scheffler to start the fourth round. Scheffler led the field with a 54-hole score of 23 under par, followed by McIlroy and Xander Schauffele in a tie for second at 17 under.
That gap is the greatest number of strokes overcome in the final round to win the Tour Championship. McIlroy carded a 4-under 66 on Sunday, and he was helped by Scheffler coming apart with a final-round 73.
McIlroy’s play over the course of the Tour championship was largely phenomenal. But not entirely.
He started the event with a triple bogey on Hole 1, followed by a bogey on Hole 2. No golfer faced a worse start than him (4 over par) in the tournament. Indeed, none of the other golfers in the field even bogeyed both of their first two holes.
And before his tournament even started, he was four strokes behind the leader, Scheffler, because of the Tour Championship’s handicap scoring. McIlroy started at 6 under; Scheffler was at 10 under.
The fact McIlroy overcame the worst start to the Tour Championship speaks to his incredible play overall.
Indeed, outside of those first two holes, McIlroy shot 21 under in his remaining 70 holes. He carded rounds of 67, 67, 63 and 66 over the four days on the par-70 East Lake course.
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In his remaining 70 holes, McIlroy had 23 birdies, two eagles and six bogeys. His best round, of course, was that 63 in Round 3 as he put himself into contention. It was the best round of the day and tied Justin Thomas and Hideki Matsuyama for low round of the tournament.
In that round alone, McIlroy carded six birdies, an eagle and a bogey.
FedEx Cup No. 3
With his win in the 2022 Tour Championship, McIlroy is now the only golfer in history to have his name etched on the FedEx Cup three times. Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson are the only other golfers to have won it more than once.
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McIlroy’s other victories came in 2016 and 2019 — meaning he has won the FedEx Cup in three of the last seven seasons.
$18 million winner’s share
Winning is nice, and so is money. McIlroy’s victory Sunday earned him the biggest winner’s share in the history of the PGA Tour, as part of the biggest purse in the history of the tour.
McIlroy’s $18 million prize eclipses the entire purses of events such as the Masters, PGA Championship, Open Championship and U.S. Open. It is only $2 million less than the purse at the Players Championship.
Not a bad payout for four days of golf.