Scottie Scheffler’s dramatic week ends with a top-10 finish in Valhalla

Rory McIlroy ‘feeling good’ about his game after final round saw him sign for a total 12-under-par

The craziest week of Scottie Scheffler’s golfing life finished with a tap-in par on the 18th hole and a walk to the score recorder’s that included high-fiving those spectators who lined the way, even if the world number one’s interest in the US PGA Championship at Valhalla in Louisville, Kentucky, was finished untypically early.

There would be no Wanamaker Trophy to add to his US Masters title of last month (so no Grand Slam this season), although a late charge – five birdies on the homeward run – enabled Scheffler to finish with a 65 for a 13-under-par total of 271, inside the top-10.

Scheffler is likely to be back in Louisville for a possible court date on Tuesday in relation to felony and misdemeanour charges which arose from his attempts to drive around a police cordon outside the club on Thursday.

“I think it’s all up in the air. I’m not really sure what the next days have in store,” said Scheffler, who returned home to Dallas, with plans to play in this week’s Charles Schwab Challenge in Fort Worth, Texas.


After what he described as a “hectic” week, Scheffler – who drifted out of contention with a third round 73 on Saturday when he had a stand-in caddie – said fatigue had set in and described how he put his head down on the recorder’s table once he finished signing his scorecard: “I’m fairly tired, definitely a lot more tired than I have been finishing some other tournaments. I’m proud of today how we went out there and fought ... out on the golf course, the support this week that I got from the fans was tremendous. The support I got from the players and caddies and everybody inside the ropes was tremendous.”

Just a week after the birth of his son, Bennett, Scheffler arrived in Louisville with a run of four wins and a runner-up finish in five tournaments before the off-course incident with the police and his arrest brought a different kind of drama that clearly had an impact on performance.

“I’ve been good throughout my career, or I’d say that I’ve gotten better throughout my career, of leaving the off-course distractions at home and kind of keeping a pretty quiet personal life; and this week obviously that was not the case,” Scheffler said.

“I’m not going to sit here and say that I played poorly [on Saturday] because of what happened on Friday. I just had a bad day out on the course and was proud of how I came out here and bounced back today.”

By the time he gets to the next Major, the US Open at Pinehurst in North Carolina, Scheffler will have a better knowledge of the possible court case.

Meanwhile, Rory McIlroy’s final round of 67 – which, remarkably, featured seven birdies in the round but also two dunked water balls on his homeward journey where he managed to escape with McIlroyeys on the 13th and 15th – saw him sign for a total of 12-under-par 272 and a top-15 finish.

“I’ve been on a big stretch of golf here. I think this was my sixth event in seven weeks. I’ve got a week off and then I’m playing another four in a row. I’m feeling good about my game,” McIlroy said.

“I feel like things are sort of clicking more, especially after the win in New Orleans. Obviously played well last week in Charlotte [to win Wells Fargo]. I’ve a week to sort of reset and try to get going again.”

Philip Reid

Philip Reid

Philip Reid is Golf Correspondent of The Irish Times