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2021 Northern Trust leaderboard, grades: Tony Finau ends victory drought in a playoff over Cameron Smith

Tony Finau won the Northern Trust at Liberty National Golf Club on Monday (23rd August 2021) with a dramatic finish. He defeated Cameron Smith and emerged out as a winner. The FedEx Cup playoffs marked the victory of Finau after a long time. Earlier, he had to struggle with 143 games to achieve this. His efforts and enthusiasm have paid for now, and he has been crowned as the winner. 

Finau was known for playing one of the best games in PGA Tour fields ten years back and achieved huge popularity at that time. He was even in the No.1 position of Golf in the entire world. His spectacular game and skills made him a champion back then. But, after that, he seemed to be struggling and failing in the consecutive games of the unending chain. But that comes to an end now, after he has won the national championship against Cameron. 

The match between Tony Finau and Cameron Smith ended with a similar score of 20-under par on 72 holes. Finau was able to win the first playoff. Later Cameron was not in good form, and his out-of-bounds shots took him away from the winning title. On the contrary, Tony performed well and won the second PGA tour of his career. The first tour win was in 2016. 


Although the competition was tough in the beginning as the game forwarded, Smith and Rahm were the major competition to the champion. But, with the weak shots, both started falling behind in the race. Finau was already playing well from the beginning and started climbing the leaderboard to the top. He was one shot ahead of Rahm, and the fight was tough. There was no idea which of the two would be leading the top position. But, the mistakes of Rahm have proven to be the reason for his loss. His tee shot -15 went straight in the bunker, missing the hole. 

Smith took the opportunity and came forward than Rahm with some amazing back-to-back shots. This push was necessary for him to make a comeback in the game and start giving the fight to Finau. For some time, Tony was seen troubling with the shots, but he coped up soon and started gaining holes with the last one as a clutch par save. 

Later in an interview, Finau said that he is no better than other players, and the only thing which led to his win was the difference in the approach. While mentioning his previous fallbacks, he said that he is a much different player now than a decade before, and his hard work and efforts have paid off. He hopes for the future to be bright and assured that there are a lot of other such winnings that are yet to be covered. He also mentioned the next two tournaments and assured me that he would be back soon in the field to lift the trophy. 

The confidence seems good, and right now, he just wants to focus on the celebration and enjoyment. Why not? His last win was before 143 games, and the champion deserves the celebration. He also mentioned that he would be preparing his practice very soon for the next games and tournaments. 

Priyanka Aggarwal, an English Literature Post Graduate has invested her flair for writing and editing masterpieces.


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