A hot putter wasn’t enough to earn Matt Jones the final place in the field for The Masters as he finished tied for second at the Valero Texas Open in San Antonio.

Seeking to join fellow Aussies Adam Scott (2010) and Steven Bowditch (2014) as winners of the Texas Open at TPC San Antonio, Jones seemed an unlikely contender at the beginning of the final round.

Outside the top 20 and five strokes off the lead, Jones matched the best score of the final round – a six-under 66 – to finish two strokes back of champion JJ Spaun (69) and tied with Matt Kuchar (69) at 11-under.

The 41-year-old had four birdies in his opening five holes on Sunday and birdied 14, 15 and 17 down the stretch to record his best PGA TOUR finish since his victory at The Honda Classic more than 12 months ago.

“I had a good round going Thursday and let it slip and then Friday I just played poorly and made a couple of mistakes,” said Jones, who was left to lament a round of three-over 75 on Friday.

“Those mistakes are what cost golf tournaments out on this tour because everyone’s so good.”

A two-time winner on Tour, Jones putted superbly on Sunday and ended the week with a Strokes Gained: Putting statistic of +0.586, something he hopes to carry forward in the events to come.

“I don’t think I’ve had a positive Strokes Gained: Putting since Maui, so to have that today and yesterday is something I can always build on,” said Jones, who needed to win to earn an invitation to play Augusta National this week.

Three-time ISPS HANDA PGA Tour of Australasia winner Steven Alker added a second Champions Tour title to his extraordinary run of form on the US seniors circuit.

The 50-year-old Kiwi shot 65 in the final round to win the Rapiscan Systems Classic by six shots, his second victory and 12th top-10 finish in just 15 starts on the Champions Tour.

“I got off to a little bit of a slow start, but yesterday was amazing,” said Alker, who shot 10-under 62 in the second round.

“I just turned my putting around and it clicked and I started hitting the ball better. It’s always nice when the week just gets better and better.

“It got really better quick, so it was great. Glad to be champion.”


Hira Naveed registered her second top-10 finish of the 2022 Epson Tour at the Casino Del Sol Golf Classic in Arizona while West Australian Danny List earned PGA TOUR Canada status with a fourth-place finish at the Q-School USA West 1 event also in Arizona.


Valero Texas Open
TPC San Antonio (Oaks Cse), San Antonio, Texas
Winner JJ Spaun              67-70-69-69—275           $US1.548m
T2          Matt Jones         68-75-68-66—277           $765,400
T18        Aaron Baddeley 69-74-68-70—281           $92,606
MC        Jason Day           74-70—144
MC        Min Woo Lee     74-72—146
WD        Danny Lee

Japan Golf Tour
Token Homemate Cup
Token Tado Country Club (Nagoya Cse), Mie
Winner Jinichiro Kozuma             66-69-66-69—270           ¥26m
Won on the first hole of sudden death playoff
T44        Andrew Evans   73-71-73-67—284           ¥455,000
T55        Brendan Jones  69-72-75-71—287           ¥312,000
MC        Anthony Quayle              71-75—146
MC        Matthew Griffin              70-76—146
MC        Adam Bland       76-76—152

PGA TOUR Latinoamerica
90 Abierto del Centro memorial Eduardo Gato Romero
Cordoba Golf Club, Cordoba, Argentina
Winner Alejandro Tosti  71-66-68-69—274
T33        Tim Stewart       72-65-76-76—289
MC        Charlie Hillier     76-72—148
MC        Denzel Ieremia  77-73—150

Korn Ferry Tour
Club Car Championship at The Landings Club
Landings Club – Deer Creek GC, Savannah, Georgia
Winner TJ Vogel              69-67-68-67—271           $US135,000
T58        Curtis Luck         71-71-72-75—289           $3,060
T65        Harrison Endycott           70-72-76-72—290           $2,985
MC        Rhein Gibson     71-72—143
MC        Brett Drewitt     72-74—146
MC        Ryan Ruffels      77-74—151

Challenge Tour
Limpopo Championship
Euphoria GC, Limpopo, South Africa
Winner Mateusz Gradecki           68-68-67-66—269           €35,793
MC        Daniel Hillier      70-70—140
MC        Deyen Lawson   71-71—142

Epson Tour
Casino Del Sol Golf Classic
Sewailo Golf Club, Tucson, AZ
Winner Andrea Lee         69-65-67-69—270           $US30,000
Won in sudden-death playoff
8            Hira Naveed       67-68-73-67—275
T17        Sarah Jane Smith             67-68-72-71—278
T20        Amelia Garvey   71-72-66-70—279
T29        Robyn Choi        69-71-71-69—280
T52        Grace Kim           71-71-73-71—286
T58        Julienne Soo      74-67-73-74—288

Q-School USA West 1
Wigwam Golf Club, Litchfield Park, Arizona
Winner Max Marsico     71-64-71-65—271
T4          Danny List          71-67-70-69—277
T17        Jack Trent           72-70-69-71—282
T42        Jack Murdoch    73-72-73-69—287

Champions Tour
Rapiscan Systems Classic
Grand Bear Golf Club, Biloxi, Missouri
Winner Steven Alker      71-62-65—198  $US240,000
T8          David McKenzie 68-71-69—208  $39,086
T20        Rod Pampling    75-67-69—211  $19,840
T48        Stuart Appleby  72-74-72—218  $4,800
T56        John Senden      76-72-72—220  $3,280

[IMAGES: Getty Images]