MIAMI (AFP) — Ireland’s Seamus Power captured his second career PGA Tour victory on Sunday winning the Bermuda Championship after a final-round collapse on the back nine by US rookie Ben Griffin.
Power fired a one-under par 70 to finish 72 holes on 19-under 265 and defeat Belgium’s Thomas Detry by a stroke over the seaside layout at Port Royal Golf Club in Southampton.
Power, the highest-ranked player in the field at 48th in the world, won his only prior PGA title at last year’s Barbasol Championship.
“Completely different feeling but just as special,” Power said. “It’s so hard. It’s amazing. It’s special. It’s going to take a little while to sink in but absolutely over the moon.”
Blustery winds battered Power and Griffin particularly over the back nine after both had strong starts. Power opened with a birdie and added more at the fifth and par-5 seventh.
Griffin, who shared the 54-hole lead with Power, birdied four of the first six holes and opened the back nine with back-to-back birdies to seize command
“Ben made a lot after getting 10 and 11,” Power said.
“I knew it was just going to be really hard coming in and it was.”
Griffin, who last year gave up on golf to become a mortgage loan advisor before making a comeback, made four bogeys in a row starting at the 12th and added a double bogey at the par-3 16th.
“It’s a bummer that I didn’t finish it off today but I’m just happy to be out here playing,” Griffin said, his voice cracking.
“I can’t get mad at anything I do because it’s cool to be able to play on the PGA Tour.”
Griffin ended up sharing third with American Patrick Rodgers and Taiwan’s Kevin Yu.
Power had his own battle to finish. He stumbled with a bogey at the par-3 13th, answered with a birdie at 14 to grab the solo lead for the first time Sunday, then made bogeys at 15 and the par-3 16th.
The Irishman, the only player with three birdies at the 16th in the same Bermuda event, took a bogey in 30-mph winds, dropping his lead to a single stroke.
Power responded with a birdie at the par-5 17th and, after coming up short of the green on his approach, pitched to the green and two-putted for bogey for the victory.
“I made hard work of it in the end but delighted to get it done,” Power said.
Griffin kept perspective and optimism despite his nightmare end, saying it was “pretty unbelievable” to even be playing in PGA events.