Johnson tunes up for US Open with Memphis win

Updated 12 June 2012
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Johnson tunes up for US Open with Memphis win

MEMPHIS: A pulled back muscle after trying lift a jet ski cost Dustin Johnson 11 weeks of golf but in just his second tournament back the big-hitting American had no problems hoisting the St. Jude Classic trophy on Sunday.
Johnson tuned up for the July 14-17 US Open by carding birdies on two of the last three holes for a one-shot victory in Memphis, Tennessee, while Rory McIlroy squandered a chance at winning with an errant tee shot on his final hole.
““I tried to just play my game today,” Johnson said. ““I’m hitting the ball well. I was just trying to play my game and get as many looks at birdies as I could. And, you know, I did that.” Johnson was injured trying to lift his jet ski off a trailer and, following a return at last week’s Memorial tournament where he tied for 19th, he fired a four-under 66 in the final round at TPC Southwind to finish at nine-under 271, one clear of fellow American John Merrick (68).
He claimed his sixth PGA Tour title, moved back to 10th in the world and became just the second player after Tiger Woods to win in each of his first five years out of college.
““It feels really good. Especially having so much time off and coming back,” said Johnson. ““Last week helped a lot competing and getting back in the groove of things and then I came out this week and I just played well all week.” Ryan Palmer (66), Chad Campbell (68), Australian Nick O’Hern (69) and US Ryder Cup captain Davis Love III (69) shared third at seven-under 273.
It was a rollercoaster day for Northern Ireland’s world number two McIlroy, who arrived at the 18th hole tied for the lead only to send his three-wood tee shot into a water hazard and end up with a double-bogey.
““I was missing that three-wood left all day,” said McIlroy, who finished tied for seventh. ““To be honest, I wasn’t really that comfortable with it, but I knew it was the shot that I needed to play and I didn’t hit the way I wanted to.” Johnson started the final round one shot back of overnight leaders Merrick, O’Hern and Love III but fired a laser approach inside four feet on the opening hole and converted the birdie to join the lead.
Back-to-back birdies on the sixth and seventh holes, the first via an impressive 17-foot putt and the next coming from yet another close wedge shot, ensured the 27-year-old stayed on top of the leaderboard.
But when he failed to get up and down from the greenside bunker on the ninth hole and posted bogey, his momentum stalled and a handful of challengers leapfrogged him on the board.
Six consecutive pars kept the American in the mix before he made his move, just as those ahead of him faltered.
Johnson birdied the par-five 16th to join the lead pack at eight-under and as McIlroy and Campbell sent their tee shots on the 18th into the water, Johnson drained an eight-foot birdie on the 17th to take the outright lead at nine-under.
A routine par on the last proved good enough but it left Merrick and O’Hern, playing in the final group, a chance to tie with birdies.
O’Hern dunked his tee shot into the water while Merrick found deep rough but advanced the ball to just short of the green and almost chipped in to force a playoff.

 


Manchester United inflict more semifinal misery on sorry Spurs

Updated 21 April 2018
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Manchester United inflict more semifinal misery on sorry Spurs

  • Manchester United come from behind to make FA Cup final.
  • Mauricio Pochettino yet to win a trophy as manager.

A third cup final with Manchester United for Jose Mourinho. More FA Cup semifinal misery for Tottenham.
While Mauricio Pochettino wins admiration for his style of football, the manager has yet to actually win a trophy in management.
A 2-1 collapse to United at Wembley Stadium on Saturday left Tottenham reeling from an eighth successive loss in the FA Cup semifinals.
Pochettino is responsible for two of the setbacks, having also fallen short against Chelsea last season.
At the stadium where Tottenham have been playing their home matches this season, Dele Alli's goal gave the 1991 FA Cup winners hope of turning around their miserable record in world football's oldest knockout competition.
But Alexis Sanchez leveled in the 24th minute and Ander Herrera struck the winner in the second half. It ensured Mourinho, who won the League Cup and Europa League in his first season at United, has a chance to also end this campaign with silverware against Chelsea or Southampton in the FA Cup final.
"We're getting used to being in finals," Herrera said. "This club is all about titles and finals."
While Mourinho has fallen short in the English Premier League behind newly crowned champion Manchester City, United are second and on course for their highest finish since Alex Ferguson retired in 2013.
Tottenham would settle with holding onto fourth place to secure a third season in a row in the Champions League.
Liverpool missed a chance to considerably stretch its advantage over Tottenham in one of Saturday's two league games. Juergen Klopp's side threw away a two-goal lead to draw with last-place West Bromwich Albion 2-2 and move only three points ahead of Tottenham.
Chelsea, who plays Southampton in the other FA Cup semifinal on Sunday, are five points behind Tottenham with four games remaining.

POGBA TRANSFORMED
When United fell behind to Tottenham, Paul Pogba was culpable.
A high ball was launched forward by Tottenham, a lethargic Pogba didn't try to break sweat in an attempt to prevent it reaching Eriksen. It allowed the Dane to whip in a cross for Alli to slide onto at the far post and strike past David De Gea in 11th minute
Had Harry Kane made a connection at the far post with Son Heung-min's cross three minutes later, Tottenham might have extended their lead.
Instead, United were able to draw level. Pogba made amends for his earlier inertia by dispossessing Mousa Dembele and delivering a cross that Sanchez headed past static goalkeeper Michel Vorm.
Sanchez did the hard work to create the winner in the 62nd, holding off Kieran Trippier and rolling the ball into the penalty area where Jesse Lingard teed up Herrera to shoot past Vorm.