The Steven Alker resurgence story has gained another winning chapter but the Kiwi golfer has proven he’s not perfect.
Alker has birdied three of the last four holes in the final round of the latest PGA Tour Champions event to win for the fourth time this year and tighten his grip on the Charles Schwab Cup for the highest money earner.
But as hot as his hands are on course right now, Alker has come up with a drop that shocked onlookers as the presentations took place for the Dominion Energy Charity Classic at the Country Club of Virginia in Richmond, USA.
As he was handed the trophy, the glass plate fell from the base. Thankfully it didn’t break after hitting the grass.
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“The first mistake Steven Alker has made all year,” PGA Tour Champions captioned a video of the trophy malfunction.
Earlier, Alker was in full control on the course, shooting a four-under 68 in his final round to come from two shots down overnight and bank US$334,000 (NZ$580,000) for the win.
Alker finished at 14-under, beating KJ Choi by a single shot after his final round of five-under 67.
Overnight leader Jerry Kelly was clinging to the lead until Alker started his run of birdies on the 15th.
Kelly, who started and closed the day at 12-under, finished in a three-way tie with Pádraig Harrington and Doug Barron for third.
“It was kind of a dogfight down there at the end,” Alker told the PGA Champions Tour website.
“There was so many on. I was trying not to look at the leaderboard, because there were so many guys just trying to win this golf tournament.
“So I was just pleased to get … I made those clutch birdies on 15, 16, and especially 17, that was huge
“So it was exciting and nerve-racking, everything, all those emotions.”
Two tournaments remain on the PGA Champions Tour calendar with both being Charles Schwab Cup Playoff events with double points on offer.
The first of three playoff events was Alker’s win in the Dominion Energy Charity Classic. Given he was on top before the first playoff tournament, the Kiwi is now in a commanding position to lift the Charles Schwab Cup.
“Probably need to win the last two events to have any chance of catching Steven in the Schwab Cup,” Pádraig Harrington wrote on social media after he finished in a tie for third with Doug Barron at 12-under.
The penultimate event of the PGA Tour Champions and Charles Schwab Cup playoffs begins on November 14.