Si Woo Kim youngest Players Championship winner, Ian Poulter second at Sawgrass

Kim Si-woo of South Korea celebrates after winning The Players Championship at TPC at Sawgrass in Ponte Vedra Beach Florida

All week during The Players Championship, the media talked about the heavy hitters.

But on the course, solid and stoic, he looked like belonged on a list of champions that includes 11 members of the World Golf Hall of Fame and global superstars such as Jack Nicklaus, Tiger Woods and Greg Norman. Rickie Fowler, who won the year before, closed with a 79. Could Jason Day repeat as victor?

21-year-old Kim will have to go back to South Korea by the time he's 30 to serve his time in the military so it remains to be seen at what point he will drop the clubs to return home.

Kim played bogey-free golf, especially on the back nine of the course.

Kim kept a clean card to the end for a 3-under 69 to become the youngest champion in the 44-year history of the biggest tournament this side of the majors.

The "heavy hitters" - Johnson et al, all fell off the pace, with Day shooting an 8-over 80 for the afternoon.

The strength of The Players Championship is the depth of its field, the size of its purse and the pedigree of so many winners. He played tough, mature golf, didn't record a pageant score and is now forever a victor of one of golf's biggest events. The searing heat throughout the majority of The Player Championship, the change in winds on Day 3 and the rain that did come in the early part of the round - they all affected scoring.

"I really wish I could have that benefit", Kim, who is only the second South Korean after K.J. Choi to reign supreme at Sawgrass, told reporters through a translator Sunday.


Golfer Kim Si-woo on Sunday became the youngest player ever to win the Players Championship in the U.S. The next South Korean on the list is Wang Jeung-hun, a three-time European Tour victor, at No. 57.

J.B. Holmes brought the wrong kind of a show - an 84, the highest final round of anyone who had at least a share of the 54-hole lead.

For runner-up Poulter it was also a bounce back of sorts. Bogeys on the 12 and 18 holes were his unraveling. He spent a full year on the Web.com Tour in 2014 and had only one top 10, and the following year he won the Stonebrae Classic and earned his way back to the big leagues. "And from that experience, I think that made me win this tournament".

"I've been needing something like this. But it was tough to get it close on those closing holes".

Poulter has been critical of the Wentworth greens, but with more alterations made to the putting surfaces since last year's event, he is now eager to get going in Surrey. "But the fourth shot was pretty special - from one of the worst shots I've ever hit to one of the very best".

The win was Kim's second on the PGA Tour and earned him a five-year exemption on the Tour. At 21, he was the season's youngest victor.

It remains compulsory in Korea for able bodied men between the ages of 18 and 35 to serve a two-year stint in the military, so Kim will eventually swap birdies and bogeys for the barracks and boisterous bawlings at some point in the next five years.

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