Dustin Johnson claims win ahead of Jason Day at WGC-Bridgestone
By Ali Stafford
Last Updated: 04/07/16 2:52pm
Dustin Johnson registered his second win in as many starts with a one-stroke victory at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational, as world No 1 Jason Day faltered along the closing stretch.
The US Open champion posted a second successive 66 at Firestone CC and claim a third WGC title ahead of nearest challenger Scott Piercy, while long-time leader Day slipped away after dropping three strokes in two holes late in his final round.
Beginning three strokes adrift of overnight pacesetters Day and Piercy, Johnson mixed six birdies with two bogeys to set the clubhouse target at six under.
Looking for a fourth win of the year, Day had moved two strokes clear early in his final round with a chip-in eagle from off the second green.
Kevin Chappell made an early move up the leaderboard and briefly got within two after reaching the turn in 30, only to slip back with a blemish at the 11th and back-to-back bogeys from the 14th.
Piercy rolled in a birdie-three from 15 feet at the eighth to reduce Day's advantage to one, before the pair both responded to bogeying the ninth by kicking off their back nine with a gain.
As Piercy ran up successive blemishes from the 12th to drop back and Johnson made his move by picking up strokes at the 13th and 14th, Day holed his par-save putt from the 13th fringe to maintain a slender cushion.
Day slipped alongside Johnson on six under when he took two attempts from five feet at the 15th, as Jordan Spieth drained a 15-footer at the last to close a final-round 67.
Johnson took sole control for the first time by sliding in a birdie-three at the 17th, only to get into bother at the last when his approach clipped the branch of a tree.
Day sent his third shot towards the par-five 16th in to the hazard on his way to a double-bogey seven and slip to four under, as Johnson nudged in a bogey-five at the 18th to set the score to chase.
With Day completing the 17th in regulation and needing to hole his second shot at the par-four last to force a play-off, the Australian saw his hopes ended with an errant tee-shot into trees.
The world No 1 couldn't save par at the last as he ended with a two-over 72, as Piercy coaxed home a 10-foot birdie to sign for a level-par 70 and claim outright second.
Matt Kuchar carded a bogey-free 66 to join Spieth, Day and Kevin Chappell in a tie for third, while Open champion Zach Johnson posted a five-under 65 to end the week level par.
Rickie Fowler and Adam Scott joined Johnson six off the pace, as defending champion Shane Lowry closed with successive gains to post a final-round 68.