WILMINGTON, Del — The BMW Championship has not began but, however Will Zalatoris is already in the lead. Not on the course, however—and maybe extra importantly—in the FedEx Cup standings.
By advantage of his first PGA Tour win at the FedEx St. Jude Championship, Zalatoris rocketed up from twelfth to first, 124 factors forward of defending Masters champ and four-time winner Scottie Scheffler.
The win was a very long time coming for Zalatoris, who has 9 top-10s this season and a number of shut calls in majors courting again to the 2020 U.S. Open. One of the greatest ball-strikers on tour, he’s bought all the bodily instruments to win on tour, even along with his “balky” putter, which, in actuality, isn’t that much worse than tour average.
“Yeah, it’s amazing how well we gelled. I’ve joked with him that he can only go downhill from here,” Zalatoris mentioned Wednesday. “The part that he did such a great job of, especially on Sunday, is just keeping me in the moment, just telling me to focus on my breathing, and then at times when things got a little tense he’d pull out some of his classic dad jokes to kind of make me laugh.”
There had been a lot of tense moments on Sunday for Zalatoris, who wanted a clutch par save on the 72nd inexperienced to drive a playoff with Sepp Straka and then practically dunked his strategy shot on the third playoff gap in the water. Instead, his ball stayed up on the rocks however nestled under the reduce of tough that led right down to the water. It was a precarious place for anybody, not to mention somebody attempting to seize their first PGA Tour win.
“It’s tough because you’re 20 feet from the hole and all I’ve got to do is move it a foot forward, and I basically will win the golf tournament unless I do something silly,” Zalatoris mentioned. “Josh Gregory [his coach] had a hilarious line; he mentioned, all you needed to do was transfer the ball a foot, and hopefully it is ahead, and if it is backwards you lose the golf match.
“Yeah, I knew for sure that I wasn’t going to play it, but I just wanted to make sure considering I was that close to the hole that I was not giving up an easy opportunity.”
Instead Zalatoris and Stock made the prudent name to go to the drop zone, from which Zalatoris bought up and right down to win. The win was a milestone, for certain, but in addition earned him 2,000 FedEx Cup Points. Now first in the standings heading into the BMW, not a lot has modified for the budding star.
“Yes and no. There’s so much golf ahead of us,” Zalatoris mentioned. “That’s the thing is that of course I would love to obviously hold my position going into next week and hold a two-shot lead, but we’ve got the best players in the world here. Just because I won last week doesn’t mean it makes this any easier, so I’ve got to go back out there and do it again.”
It is perhaps barely statistically simpler in that there are solely 68 gamers in the discipline this week in comparison with 120 in Memphis. The counterpoint is that this discipline is full of the guys taking part in the greatest golf proper now. On a course he’s by no means seen earlier than this week, Zalatoris must rely closely on his new associate. If final week was any indication, that doesn’t sound prefer it’ll be a difficulty.
“He did just an amazing job, especially considering that Monday was our first day together. Hats off to him going down the stretch,” Zalatoris mentioned. “Being able to be in the moment and just tell me, hey, this is the club, commit to this shot, considering we’ve only been together for that short amount of time was incredible.”