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Cameron Smith’s Bittersweet Victory: An Intense Finish At LIV Golf London

Ripper GC Captain Cameron Smith won the individual title by one stroke at LIV Golf London

Cameron Smith, adorned with a mixture of triumph and disappointment, found himself on the 18th green at LIV Golf London, closing his eyes and placing his hands behind his head. The conflicting range of emotions surged within him after a dramatic finish that unfolded on Sunday.

In a splendid display of skill and resilience, Smith clinched the individual title, marking his second triumph in just 13 regular season starts since joining the LIV.

This victory served as the perfect catalyst to gather momentum as he approaches his upcoming title defence at the prestigious Open Championship in two weeks’ time.

However, a tinge of regret gnawed at Smith’s heart as he missed a critical 6-foot putt for par, which would have forced the first team playoff in the history of LIV Golf.

The unfortunate bogey on the final hole at Centurion Club relegated his all-Australian Ripper GC to a second-place finish, trailing one shot behind this season’s points leaders, 4Aces GC, who secured their second team title of the season. Smith’s putt became the focal point, and the 4Aces had to endure a nail-biting wait to confirm their victory.

4Aces GC won the team championship at LIV Golf London.
4Aces GC won the team championship at LIV Golf London. © Montana Pritchard/LIV Golf)

“Obviously thrilled about the individual win, but it would’ve been nice to get up there with the boys,” Smith shared, reflecting on his final-round 68 that secured a winning score of 15 under. “It’s a bit of mixed emotions at the moment.”

Smith, in conjunction with his teammate Marc Leishman, formed the last beacon of hope for the Rippers in their quest to chase down the 4Aces.

The 4Aces, who began the day trailing by four strokes, orchestrated an impressive comeback, seizing the lead at 34 under. The Rippers entered the final hole, the par-5 18th, at 33 under. Individually, Smith held a two-shot advantage over the 4Aces’ Patrick Reed.

Smith was compelled to lay up after his drive found the rough, while Leishman’s second shot nestled just off the back of the green.

Fans watched as the leading group made their way to the 18th green at the Centurion Club.
Fans watched as the leading group made their way to the 18th green at the Centurion Club. © Montana Pritchard/LIV Golf

As Smith executed his third shot, a gust of wind unexpectedly redirected his ball into a treacherous bunker. With great determination, he skillfully blasted out to a commendable 6 feet.

Leishman then completed his two-putt for birdie, levelling the team leaderboard while concluding the individual competition in a tie for second place alongside Reed.

But fate took an unfortunate turn. After an exemplary week of putting, highlighted by holing over 105 feet of putts in his first 10 holes on Sunday, Smith’s par attempt agonizingly slipped past the edge of the hole.

While his individual victory was sealed, the chance for the Rippers to clinch their first team triumph slipped through their grasp.

“I really wanted Cam to make the one on the last there,” Leishman expressed. “He played great and putted great all week. To win the tournament and still walk off the green disappointed, I guess that’s what this is all about, the team format.”

The 4Aces have undoubtedly discovered the winning formula for success in team competitions. Their triumph at LIV Golf London marked their sixth team title since last season, and the second of this season, adding to their earlier victory in Adelaide.

This commanding performance further solidified their position atop the team point standings, extending their lead to 39 points over Torque GC, who have emerged victorious in three tournaments this year.

Contributing significantly to the 4Aces’ triumph was Patrick Reed, who carded a splendid 6-under 65, propelling him to a total score of 14 under.

The remaining two pivotal scores were provided by Pat Perez, who admirably posted a bogey-free 66, and team captain Dustin Johnson, who delivered a solid 67 (with Peter Uihlein’s 68 not counting).

The 4Aces endured a slow start on Friday, amassing a modest 3-under team score, before launching a remarkable resurgence over the weekend, finishing a staggering 31 under.

Although they may not have replicated their dominant form from last season, their position as the team to beat remains unchallenged as they continue their impressive campaign through nine events. Sunday’s outcome serves as the latest testament to their resilience and skill.

“We were seeing a lot of those teams getting too close to us at the top of that board,” Reed revealed. “I felt like as a team, we just weren’t really getting the numbers we wanted to. This week meant a lot for us to go out and make a statement.”

One of the key statements made by the 4Aces revolves around their ability to finish tournaments strongly. Reed remained flawless, carding a remarkable 7-under through his first 11 holes.

Perez shone on the back nine, producing a remarkable 4-under score. Johnson, the team’s captain, contributed an eagle and a birdie during the latter stages of his round, continuously chipping away at the Rippers’ lead until they ultimately usurped them.

“That was the biggest thing,” Reed emphasized. “We kept pressure on them.”

The climax unfolded on the final hole, with the spotlight falling on Cam Smith, widely renowned as LIV Golf’s preeminent putter. A six-foot putt separated the 4Aces from potentially participating in LIV Golf’s inaugural team playoff.

“Cam hasn’t missed one of those in his life, so I’m pretty shocked,” Perez admitted. “Nonetheless, it would’ve been cool. That would’ve been a separator again in golf, to have a team playoff. I think it would’ve been awesome.”

Despite falling short this time, Smith and his Rippers can draw solace from their commendable second-place finish, the team’s best result to date. The foundations have been laid, providing a sturdy platform upon which to build their contention for team accolades.

“We showed that we’re a contender in the team format,” Smith affirmed. “That’s where we want to be every week.”


Here are the standings and counting scores for Sunday’s final round of the team competition at LIV Golf London. The three best scores from each team count in every round for their total team score. The team with the lowest cumulative score after three rounds wins the team title.

  1. 4ACES GC (-34): Patrick Reed 65, Pat Perez 66, Dustin Johnson 67 (Rd. 3 score: -15)
  2. RIPPER GC (-33): Marc Leishman 66, Cameron Smith 68, Jediah Morgan 69 (Rd. 3 score: -10)
  3. STINGER GC (-29): Louis Oosthuizen 68, Branden Grace 69, Dean Burmester 69 (Rd. 3 score: -7)
  4. RANGEGOATS GC (-26): Harold Varner III 67, Talor Gooch 68, Bubba Watson 71 (Rd. 3 score: -7)
  5. MAJESTICKS GC (-24): Ian Poulter 66, Henrik Stenson 69, Laurie Canter 70 (Rd. 3 score: -8)
  6. CLEEKS GC (-23): Richard Bland 66, Bernd Wiesberger 67, Graeme McDowell 69 (Rd. 3 score: -11
  7. CRUSHERS GC (-22): Anirban Lahiri 68, Bryson DeChambeau 68, Charles Howell III 71 (Rd. 3 score: -6)
  8. FIREBALLS GC (-21): Eugenio Chacarra 67, Carlos Ortiz 67, Abraham Aner 69 (Rd. 3 score: -10)
  9. IRON HEADS GC (-18): Scott Vincent 66, Danny Lee 69, Kevin Na 69 (Rd. 3 score: -9)
  10. TORQUE GC (-17): Sebastian Munoz 65, Joaquin Niemann 69, Mito Pereira 69 (Rd. 3 score: -10)
  11. SMASH GC (-17): Brooks Koepka 68, Jason Kokrak 70, Chase Koepka 72 (Rd. 3 score: -3)
  12. HYFLYERS GC (-16): Cameron Tringale 68, Phil Mickelson 71, Brendan Steele 71 (Rd. 3 score: -3)

The final round of the team competition at LIV Golf London concluded with these scores, determining the team standings.

Each team’s cumulative score is calculated based on the three best scores from each round. The team with the lowest overall score after three rounds emerges as the team champion.