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Sepp Straka boosts Ryder Cup chances with John Deere Classic victory

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Austria’s Sepp Straka boosted his Ryder Cup chances by claiming a second PGA Tour title in the John Deere Classic, despite a double bogey on the 72nd hole.

Straka needed to birdie the 18th at TPC Deere Run to card a stunning closing 59, but pulled his approach into the water left of the green.

The resulting six meant Straka had to settle for a 62 and setting the clubhouse target at 21 under par, with six groups still to finish.

A birdie on the 14th took Brendon Todd to within a shot of the lead, only for the American to then three-putt the 16th and fail to birdie the par-five 17th.

Todd finished in a tie for second on 19 under with playing partner Alex Smalley, with Sweden’s Ludvig Aberg another stroke back in a tie for fourth with American Adam Schenk.

Straka, who had recorded an eagle and nine birdies in his first 14 holes, said: “The 59 was nowhere in my head really.

“I knew I had a chance but in that situation the only thing that matters is trying to win the golf tournament.

“It was not a good shot [on 18]. I was really just trying to go middle of the green, pulled it early and the wind dragged it over to the water. It was unfortunate but the first bad shot I hit all day so I’ll give myself a bit of slack.”

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