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Kuchar closes strong for second win of season at Sony Open

Kuchar closes strong for second win of season at Sony Open
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(Reuters) – Matt Kuchar overcame early wobbles to race home to his second victory in two months, a four-shot triumph at the Sony Open in Hawaii on Sunday. After losing his two-stroke advantage after the fourth hole, Kuchar kicked things into high gear by birding six of his final 10 holes to finish off a four-under-par 66 that took him to 22-under at Waialae Country Club in Honolulu.

Runner-up Andrew Putnam closed with a two-under-par 68 that left him at 18-under.

“It was not at all what I was looking for,” Kuchar told the Golf Channel. “I know that I was playing well, so I tried to stay confident. If I keep plugging along, I knew good things would happen.

“Andrew was tough. He was battling me, took the lead … it was nice to have that pressure, to have come through and to make some birdies coming in.” Putnam took a one-shot lead after Kuchar dropped three bogeys in his first five holes but could not keep pace on the back nine where he stalled at even par while Kuchar was on fire. Four players finished in a tie for third at 17-under including Australian Marc Leishman and Canadian Corey Conners.

Keith Mitchell began the day in the final group but tumbled to a two-over-par 72 to drop to a tie for 16th.

The 40-year-old Kuchar ended a nearly five-year drought when he won the Mayakoba Classic in November. His latest victory gives him nine PGA Tour victories for his career.

“I think it might have been Jay-Z that said ‘40 is the new 20?’” said Kuchar, the second multiple-time winner on Tour this season. “I hope that’s the case. I’m awfully pleased with my game.

“Obviously last year was disappointing, but to win two out of three events is crazy to comprehend.”

(Writing by Jahmal Corner in Los Angeles; editing by Amlan Chakraborty)

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