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S. Koreans finish well out of contention at final PGA Tour playoff event

Aug. 28, 2023 - 09:35 By Yonhap
Tom Kim of South Korea plays his shot from the fifth tee during the second round of the TOUR Championship at East Lake Golf Club on Aug.25 in Atlanta, Georgia.(AFP-Yonhap)

Three South Korean players have ended up well back of the pack at the final playoff event on the PGA Tour.

Kim Si-woo and Tom Kim tied for 20th place at the Tour Championship in Atlanta on Sunday, with both finishing at six-under 276. Kim Si-woo shot a four-under 66 in the final round at East Lake Golf Club with six birdies and two bogeys. Tom Kim went bogey-free in his round of 67.

Im Sung-jae finished alone in 24th place at three-under 279, following a 69 in the final round. He was all over the place Sunday, recording four birdies, one eagle, three bogeys and one double bogey.

The Tour Championship was open only to the top 30 players in the FedEx Cup standings through two playoff events. Tom Kim ranked 16th, followed by Im at 17th and Kim Si-woo at 20th.

Under the "starting strokes" system, all three South Koreans started the Tour Championship at two-under. Scottie Scheffler, No. 1 in FedEx Cup points, started out at 10-under, and No. 2 Viktor Hovland began his tournament at eight-under. Hovland ran away with the title at 27-under, five better than Xander Schauffele, after shooting 63 on Sunday.

At last year's Tour Championship, Im began at four-under, while Scheffler opened at 10-under. But Im ended up tying Scheffler for second place at 20-under, one behind the champion, Rory McIlroy.

None of the South Koreans could make up ground over four rounds this time and never seriously challenged for the title.

With the playoffs behind them, Im and Kim Si-woo will represent South Korea at the Asian Games in Hangzhou, China, next month. Professionals will be allowed to play at the Asian Games for the first time this year. Im and Kim will be joined by amateurs Cho Yoo-young and Jang Yu-bin.

The men's golf tournament in Hangzhou begins September 28. (Yonhap)