Berger breaks through for maiden title at St. Jude Classic


Daniel Berger showed poise beyond his years as he withstood a weather delay and some of golf's biggest names to win his first PGA Tour title via the St. Jude Classic.

Inclement weather in Memphis, Tennessee forced Sunday's final round to be suspended in the afternoon but that did not derail Berger, who retained his three-shot lead to reign supreme at 13 under.

The 23-year-old American - the leader after the second round - carded a three-under-par 67 at TPC Southwind to upstage five-time major champion Phil Mickelson (67), Steve Stricker (67) and Brooks Koepka (66) ahead of next week's U.S. Open.

Dustin Johnson, who has two third-place finishes this season after narrowly missing out at last week's Memorial Tournament, finished four shots off the pace, despite a scintillating final-round 63.

Berger's pursuit of a maiden crown did not get off to a good start, bogeying his first hole, but the Florida native - who tied for 10th at this year's Masters - bounced back by birdieing the sixth and ninth holes.

The back nine, though, started like the front, with a bogey at the par-four 10th, however Berger responded with three birdies in four holes from the 12th.

Mickelson and Stricker loomed large in the Tour's final stop before the U.S. Open, producing flawless back nines, but Berger's lead proved too hard to bridge, as Koepka finished second again, having lost to Sergio Garcia in a play-off at the AT&T Byron Nelson last month.

Johnson huffed and puffed, rising 13 positions after closing with a birdie, though it was still not enough.

The nine-time Tour winner showed his class in the final round, posting an eagle and six birdies in a flawless end to his day, having bogeyed the third hole.

Brian Gay finished in sole possession of sixth at eight under following his four-under-par 66.

Russell Henley (67) and Noh Seung-yul (69) were a shot further back, while Shawn Stefani (65), Ken Duke (68) and Brett Stegmaier (69) ended the tournament at six under.