Scottie Scheffler celebrates winning the Players Championship
Scheffler is just the third player to hold the Players and Masters titles at the same time
-17 S Scheffler (US); -12 T Hatton (Eng); -10 V Hovland (Nor), T Hoge (US)
Selected: -9 H Matsuyama (Jpn); -8 J Rose (Eng), MW Lee (Aus); -6 A Rai (Eng); -5 D Willett (Eng), T Fleetwood (Eng)

Scottie Scheffler will return to the top of the world rankings after a commanding five-shot victory at the Players Championship at TPC Sawgrass.

The American holed five birdies on the trot midway through his round to race away from the field as he closed with a three-under 69 to win on 17 under.

England’s Tyrrell Hatton finished second on 12 under after birdieing his final five holes in a 65.

Viktor Hovland’s 68 lifted him into joint third on 10 under with Tom Hoge.

Scheffler will overtake Jon Rahm at the top of the rankings after the Spaniard pulled out of the Players Championship following the first round because of illness.

Solid round enough to win

The victory sees Scheffler become just the third player to hold the Players and Masters titles at the same time, emulating Tiger Woods and Jack Nicklaus.

It also earns him $4.5m from a record $25m (£21m) purse at the PGA Tour’s flagship event.

Scheffler started the final round with a two-shot lead over Min Woo Lee of Australia but that advantage had been wiped out by the third hole. Lee birdied the opener and Scheffler bogeyed the third to leave them tied on 13 under.

However, a triple-bogey seven on the fourth derailed Lee and he also had a double-bogey seven on the par-five 11th as his challenge further faded. He eventually signed for a 76 to finish on eight under par.

The threat to Scheffler strolling to the title appeared to be coming from Hatton, who was enjoying a barnstorming finish.

Hatton was level par for his first nine holes but then birdied the 10th, 12th, and every hole from the 14th to play the final nine holes in a record-equalling 29 and set a clubhouse target of 12 under.

But just as Hatton was finishing up, Scheffler was chipping in for a birdie on the par-three eighth to get to 14 under and that sparked his run of five successive birdies that took him into a six-shot lead with six to play.

“I did a really good job of staying patient and not trying to force things [early on] and then I got hot in the middle of the round and tried to put things away,” said the Texan.

“The final stretch is tough, especially with how windy it was getting. The shots on 17 were challenging and I made a great par on 18. I’m relieved and tired.”

More to follow.

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