In “Hot & Cold,” we’ll be focusing each week on what specific areas of the game players excelled and disappointed in throughout the previous tournament. Last Sunday, Rory McIlroy captured the Tour finale, and here’s a look at where some of the most notable players gained and lost strokes over the four days of action at the Tour Championship.
When Rory McIlroy gains strokes in every significant strokes gained category over four days of an event, then he may be the hardest man in golf to stop. Tee to green the Ulsterman dominated at East Lake, gaining 11 strokes over the field in this area. Check out the clubs McIlroy used to victory at last week’s Tour finale in our WITB piece here.
Xander Schauffele’s love affair with East Lake continued last week, and the 25-year-old showed blistering form with his irons for the four days in Atalanta. Schauffele led the field in strokes gained: approaching the green, gaining 8.1 strokes over the field in this area. That number represents Schauffele’s best performance of his career with his irons.
Brooks Koepka may have faded on Sunday in Atlanta, but last week, the American produced his best performance with his irons since his runner-up finish at the U.S. Open earlier this year. Koepka gained 4.7 strokes over the field for his approach play at East Lake and was only let down by a surprisingly poor performance off the tee where he lost almost two strokes to the field.
If we thought Dustin Johnson’s form hit rock bottom at the BMW where he lost over six strokes for his approach play, then we were sorely mistaken. Johnson ended his season at East Lake losing a mammoth nine strokes to the field with his irons, and he also lost another five on the greens.
Justin Rose was another big name to disappoint at East Lake, and the Englishman suffered on the greens where he lost 5.7 strokes to the field.
Rickie Fowler was being held up by his putter at the Tour finale, with the American losing 5.1 strokes to the field for his approach play at East Lake. That’s Fowler’s worst performance with his irons since 2014.