Viktor Hovland claims fifth PGA Tour title after stunning final round in Chicago

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Hovland birdied seven of the last nine holes at Olympia Fields to overhaul world number one Scottie Scheffler.
Posted on
August 20, 2023
The Editorial Team in ,
Estimated reading time: 4 minutes

Norway’s Viktor Hovland fired a stunning final round of 61 to win his fifth PGA Tour title in the BMW Championship.

Hovland birdied seven of the last nine holes at Olympia Fields to cover the back nine in just 28 shots and overhaul world number one Scottie Scheffler.

Scheffler began the day in a tie for the lead with Matt Fitzpatrick and carded a closing 66, but had no answer to Hovland’s stunning scoring burst.

Hovland found himself four shots off the pace when he followed birdies on the first, third and fifth with a three-putt bogey on the seventh, but surged back into contention with a hat-trick of birdies from the 10th.

The 25-year-old also picked up shots on the 14th and 15th and moved into a share of the lead with his ninth birdie of the day on the 17th.

Another birdie on the last took the Ryder Cup star to the top of the leaderboard on 17 under par and his victory was effectively secured moments later when Scheffler three-putted the 17th.

Fitzpatrick, whose younger brother Alex finished second on the DP World Tour earlier in the day, ended the day in the same position after matching playing partner Scheffler’s 66 to finish 15 under.

Asked where that round ranked in his career, Hovland told Sky Sports: “It has to be number one.

“I remember playing a pretty special round of golf my first year on Tour, I shot seven under at Torrey Pines when it was hailing and windy and raining and that’s probably the best I’ve ever struck it throughout a round.

“But to shoot 61 and shoot 28 on the back nine at this golf course and under the circumstances, I have nothing that beats that.”

Hovland, who started the day three off the lead, added: “I was thinking if I post a score like I did yesterday (65) I could at least have a chance, but it’s hard when you have so many guys in front of you that are really good and playing awesome.

“Catching heat on the back nine was what I had to do.”

The victory lifts Hovland to second in the FedEx Cup standings behind Scheffler heading into the season-ending Tour Championship in Atlanta.

Matt Fitzpatrick
Matt Fitzpatrick lines up his birdie putt on the ninth hole during the final round of the BMW Championship (Charles Rex Arbogast/AP)

“It’s a pretty amazing round of golf to win this tournament like that,” Scheffler said of Hovland’s 61.

“I still don’t understand how the scores were so low this week. I don’t know, this place seems pretty hard to me, but guys are just ripping it up. 61 is a fantastic round, especially with Sunday pressure, and the way he finished was a really fantastic round.

“I’m just a bit frustrated. I think that would be the way to describe it. I mean, Viktor went out and really just beat me today and played a fantastic round. I can hold my head high – I did my best out there today and fought hard. Just ultimately came up a couple of shots short.”

Fitzpatrick was equally complimentary about his Ryder Cup team-mate, although he admitted with a smile that he did call Hovland “a little s***”.

“I played great,” Fitzpatrick said. “Can’t do anything about 61. But for me, just really pleased again that I played really well in a final round in contention with the world number one and I didn’t lose it. Someone else came from behind and won it.”

Rory McIlroy, who was playing alongside Hovland, carded a closing 66 to finish in solo fourth.

“I felt like I played very average out there next to Viktor,” McIlroy said. “He played amazing.

“I was marking his card in there and I’m like, ‘oh, you only made one four on the back nine, the rest threes’, so it adds up to a nice little 28 for him. It was great to see.

Pos.PlayerTo ParR1R2R3R4Total
1Viktor Hovland-1769686561263
T2Scottie Scheffler-1566696466265
T2Matt Fitzpatrick-1566676666265
4Rory McIlroy-1265706766268
T5Brian Harman-1165686769269
T5Max Homa-1168627168269
7Sungjae Im-1068686866270
T8Russell Henley-969697063271
T8Xander Schauffele-971656768271
T10Tom Kim-772726663273
T10Harris English-768677266273
T10Andrew Putnam-770706667273
T10Corey Conners-767706769273
T10Denny McCarthy-769696570273
T15Sahith Theegala-666726967274
T15Patrick Cantlay-668687167274
T15Cameron Young-667716868274
T15Adam Svensson-670696669274
T15Wyndham Clark-666716869274
T15Sam Burns-671706271274
21Tom Hoge-571697065275
T22J.T. Poston-469687366276
T22Lucas Glover-470676970276
T22Justin Rose-470656873276
T25Collin Morikawa-367707268277
T25Rickie Fowler-366697369277
T25Eric Cole-372686869277
T25Tommy Fleetwood-370676971277
T29Keegan Bradley-271687168278
T29Chris Kirk-266667571278
T31Jon RahmPar68747167280
T31Emiliano GrilloPar73697167280
T31Si Woo KimPar71696971280
T34Jordan Spieth+168707271281
T34Tyrrell Hatton+170726871281
T34Adam Schenk+172696872281
T37Sepp Straka+271747166282
T37Patrick Rodgers+271737068282
T37Tony Finau+274686971282
40Cam Davis+373667272283
T41Kurt Kitayama+476687268284
T41Brendon Todd+471727170284
43Byeong Hun An+570677276285
44Adam Hadwin+672707272286
T45Lee Hodges+774727368287
T45Jason Day+769747470287
47Nick Taylor+1071727473290
48Seamus Power+1476727472294
49Taylor Moore+1872748072298
W/DHideki Matsuyama-71---71
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BMW Championship 2023

Date: August 17th - 20th 2023

Location: Olympia Fields Country Club (North Course), Olympia Fields, Illinois

Purse: $20,000,000

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