Having gone more than seven years and 199 tournaments without winning, Steve Lowery had every reason to feel out of his element yesterday.
He was on the 18th tee at Pebble Beach, one of the most famous spots in golf.
He was in a playoff against Vijay Singh, one of golf's toughest customers.
And he never felt more at ease.
Lowery took advantage of a stunning collapse by Singh, who made three straight bogeys on the back nine, then put him away on the first extra hole with a 7-foot birdie putt to win the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am.
"I couldn't have given it any more in 18 holes," said Lowery, who closed with a 4-under-par 68. "I just told my caddie, 'I've got nothing to lose.' Just go out and play aggressive. If anything, it kind of freed me up a little it. I just felt like I didn't have anything to lose."
Lowery, 47, became the oldest champion in the 71-year history of this event, and under a variety of circumstances, one of the more surprising winners.
He was No. 305 in the world ranking when he arrived on the Monterey Peninsula. He suffered a freak wrist injury last year that kept him out for three months and gave him temporary status this season. Most surprising of all is that Lowery was three shots behind Singh when he walked off the 14th tee.
Singh made three straight bogeys, only a wedge into 2 feet on the 18th hole for birdie at a 71 allowed him one last chance in a playoff. That didn't last long, as Singh found two more bunkers on the 18th in overtime and did well to make par.
Both players finished at 10-under 278.
"I let this one slip away," Singh said. "I was in control, but those [bogeys] took a little air out of me. I still should have won the tournament. There's no excuse for that."
Lowery earned $1.08 million and a two-year exemption. He was on a minor medical extension because of the wrist injury and was given eight tournaments to earn $282,558 to keep his card the rest of the year.
Now he's going to the Masters. It was his first victory since the 2000 Southern Farm Bureau Classic and third in his career, all won in playoffs.
Dudley Hart, who started the final round tied with Singh, didn't make a birdie until making three in a row at the end for a 72 to finish one shot out of the playoff. He tied for third with John Mallinger (65) and Corey Pavin (66).
Jason Day, the 20-year-old from Australia, finished alone in sixth after a 70.
Pebble Beach was the final tournament to qualify for the
"I can't lose either way," Perez said. "If I beat him, I'm a hero. If I don't, I'm not supposed to win."
LPGA - England's Lisa Hall won the ANZ Australian Ladies Masters in Gold Coast, when Shin Hyun-ju missed a 3-foot par putt on the final hole.
Hall shot a 6-under 66 for a 13-under total of 203. She was tied with Shin for most of the closing holes, after Karrie Webb had led early in the round.
Shin, who had a share of the lead all day, three-putted the 18th from about 45 feet for bogey, missing her 3-footer to the left when it appeared both players were heading for a playoff. Shin finished with a 68 and was alone in second.
Champions - Scott Hoch came through with birdies on five of the final eight holes for a one-shot victory in the
Hoch, who fell three shots off the lead after a bogey on the 10th hole, finished with birdies on No. 17 and No. 18 for a 4-under 68 and a win over Brad Bryant and Bruce Lietzke. Trailing by one shot when the final round started, Hoch also had birdies at Nos. 11, 12, and 15 for his second title since joining the Champions Tour in 2006. Hoch finished the tournament with a 14-under 202 total.