Jun 21, 2022 - Sports

Matt Fitzpatrick's U.S. Open win makes him king of The Country Club

Matt Fitzpatrick winning the U.S. Open (2022) and U.S. Amateur (2013).
Matt Fitzpatrick winning the U.S. Open (2022) and U.S. Amateur (2013). Photos: Warren Little/Getty Images; Matthew J. Lee/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

Matt Fitzpatrick delivered a performance for the ages on Sunday at The Country Club, winning the U.S. Open by a stroke to capture his first major championship and first victory on the PGA Tour, period.

The big picture: The 27-year-old Englishman also won the 2013 U.S Amateur at TCC, joining Jack Nicklaus as the only men to win both events on the same course (Pebble Beach: 1961 and 1972).

"The feeling's out of this world. It is so cliché, but it's stuff you dream of as a kid. Yeah, to achieve it, I can retire a happy man tomorrow."
— Fitzpatrick

ICYMI: Each of the previous three U.S. Opens at TCC ended in a playoff, and it looked for a moment like this one would, too.

  • Scottie Scheffler continued his torrid play, finishing at -5 just before the final pairing of Will Zalatoris (-5) and Fitzpatrick (-6) teed off on 18.
  • Zalatoris hit a perfect drive while Fitzpatrick missed just his third fairway of the day, landing in a bunker 161 yards from the hole.
  • But as he'd done all day, Fitzpatrick found a way to prevail, hitting what Nicklaus called "one of the great iron shots under pressure I've ever seen." It landed 18 feet from the pin and he two-putted for par.
  • Zalatoris still had a chance to force a playoff, but missed his 14-foot birdie putt by half an inch, finishing as the runner-up for the third time in his past seven majors.

What they're saying: "I thought even going for it was going to be ballsy," Zalatoris said of Fitzpatrick's shot from the bunker. "[It's] going to be shown probably for the rest of U.S. Open history."

Between the lines: Fitzpatrick's superlative iron play helped him become just the third golfer in the past 30 years to hit 17 greens in regulation in the final round of a major win.

  • He earned a record $3.15 million, part of a record $17.5 million purse.
  • His caddie, Billy Foster, had never won a major despite spending nearly 40 years on the bag for some all-time greats. "Utter relief," he told ESPN's Michael Collins of finally winning the big one.
  • Just four of 15 LIV golfers made the cut, none finishing higher than Dustin Johnson (t-24th).
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