Abraham Ancer summed up his win today at the WGC–FedEx St Jude Invitational when interviewed by CBS immediately after. “That was really crazy,” he said. “We re-regrouped, hit a couple putts and played 18 in my mind on the range… Golf is crazy.”
Certainly, it was this year at TPC Southwind. Ancer prevailed in a three-man playoff with Hideki Matsuyama and Sam Burns. On the second playoff hole, he stiffed a pitching wedge from 133 metres to five feet, only to watch Burns knock his approach slightly closer. When Matsuyama’s lengthy birdie try missed, Ancer rolled his in then exhaled when Burns – who had putted like a madman all round (six holed putts from outside 10 feet on the day) – horseshoed his attempt, giving Ancer his first win in 121 starts on the PGA Tour.
Ironically, it was Ancer who played the most pedestrian final round of the threesome. Matsuyama came from nine strokes behind at the start of the day, and Burns from eight back, while Ancer shot a non-descript, three-birdie, one-bogey 68 that included a relatively meagre 65 feet of putts made.
Still, Ancer was solid all week and that’s what matters. The man who represented Mexico in the Tokyo Olympics, and became the fourth golfer from his country to win on tour, ranked T-5 in greens in regulation, fifth in strokes gained/approach-the-green, fourth in strokes gained/tee-to-green and first in scrambling.
Ancer’s irons are far from run of the mill. Ancer plays Miura’s TC-201 irons, a model not well known in Australia.
The Miura brand, however, holds high regard in Japan. Ancer’s irons (which have Mitsubishi’s MMT 105 TX graphite shafts) are designed and forged in the company’s factory in Himeji, Japan, and have a shallow cavity, sharp topline and minimal offset for a blade-like appearance at address. The long irons feature heightened toe and heel weight for added forgiveness, with a lower centre of gravity for higher ball-flight. A slightly higher centre of gravity in the short irons provides a lower, more controlled trajectory on shorter shots.
Kind of like the shot he hit on the final playoff hole.
The clubs Abraham Ancer used to win the WGC–FedEx St Jude Invitational:
Ball: Titleist Pro V1
Driver: Callaway Epic Speed D (Mitsubishi Tensei CK Pro Blue 60 TX), 8.5 degrees
3-wood: TaylorMade SIM2 Max, 15 degrees
5-wood: TaylorMade M2 2017, 18 degrees
Irons (4): Srixon ZX; (5-PW): Miura TC-201
Wedges: Miura HB-10 (52); Artisan prototype (56, 60 degrees)
Putter: Odyssey White Hot 5
PHOTO: Tracy Wilcox