It had nothing to do with his swing. But he struggled through the third round, carding a 77. However, he bounced back with a 68 Sunday to secure the three-stroke win.
Bubba Watson watches his shot on the second hole during the third round of the Memorial golf tournament, Saturday, June 3, 2017, in Dublin, Ohio.
"Yesterday was not my best day", Dufner said.
"I thought I was in control (after 36 holes and) I had to get over it quick". "He's one of the best guys I know out here". Muirfield Village has shown an entertaining side, where players like Dufner have carded some low scores over the week, but over the weekend it showed some teeth. Rickie Fowler (72) salvaged an up-and-down day and was five behind. "And that's why it's such a great golf course because it does test everything". I want to beat him just as bad as he wants to beat me. He joined Nicklaus as the only players born in OH to win the Memorial.
He was happier about the first reference.
"I'd love to keep that trend going", he said.
Not only did he beat a stellar field, but Dufner got the best of Chief Leatherlips.
Bal a Bali earned his second Grade 1 win of the year to go with his victory in the Frank E. Kilroe Mile over the same turf in March.
Dufner played the front nine in level par and then made his move at the start of the back nine. But to see him make that putt on the last was cool.
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Four players had at least a share of the lead in a final round in which seven players were in the hunt.
No one was happier than Dufner, a former PGA champion who picked up his fifth career victory and $1,566,000, the largest paycheck of his career. So many putts were just so close. "And I feel like I did that today".
He stuffed his approach on No. 10 to 4 feet and holed a 10-foot birdie putt on the par-3 12th.
Fowler was in contention but, after four birdies, his challenge ended with bogeys on the 14th and 18th as he signed for a 70.
You wouldn't have been surprised if Dufner simply called his putter "The Enemy". A swift hack through the wet grass managed to push the ball 75 yards forward, leaving Dufner 119 from the pin - and still in the rough. He put his third shot to just over 30 feet on the 18th.
It was Fowler who "opened the doors" to Dufner and adopted him as a pseudo-roommate at his house in Florida this past winter.
"I definitely didn't think I would be three shots ahead with a 68".
The 29-year-old Australian eased his woes in hometown Columbus, Ohio as he tied for 15th on Sunday, his first top-25 result from nine starts at Muirfield Village, where he is a member.
Rickie Fowler eventually took over the lead before the rain delay, using bogey-free golf on his first 13 holes to sit at 12-under for the tournament.
Tournament founder and host Jack Nicklaus was on scene after Dufner's final putt to congratulate the champion.
"That's the goal. I think this is probably a good stepping stone for (another major)", said Dufner, who became the first OH native to win the Memorial since tournament founder and 18-time major victor Nicklaus himself.