At the beginning of March, Puerto Rico transformed into the prime location for golf fans everywhere. The world’s best players gathered for the annual Puerto Rico Open, and the spectators were not disappointed. From the luxury golfing background to the renowned players to the shocking misses and amazing birdies, the four-day event was one for the books.
To kick off the PGA TOUR in Puerto Rico, more than 100 golfers gathered at the Bahia Beach luxury resort on March 2, 2015. They came from all different countries, but they all had the same goal: to earn their spot in the official contest that would start three days later. The luxury golfing experience at Bahia Beach is second to none, and the players loved teeing off on the spectacular course designed by legendary golf architect Robert Trent Jones, Jr. The breathtaking ocean and lake views were the perfect backdrop for the event, and the challenging and varying design of the course made the best players rise to the top.
For the official PGA TOUR, the golfers headed over to our neighbor, the Trump International Golf Club, where the four-day event would take place. While the first three days certainly had surprises, it is the finish of the Puerto Rico Open that had everyone talking.
Let’s start with the beginning of the fourth and final round that began on Sunday, March 8, 2015. The conditions were windy and rainy, but the players were there to win the $540,000 winning share that was up for stake. Alex Cejka, a 44-year-old representing Germany, scored a birdie on four of the first six holes, giving him a strong start to what would end up being the game he will never forget.
Now it’s the end of the fourth round, and only a 2.5-foot putt stands between Argentinian Emiliano Grillo and a win—and he shockingly misses it. This brings the game to a five-man sudden-death playoff. All of the players have a reasonable chance to make birdie on the par-5 hole, with Tim Petrovic up first. He misses. Next is Grillo, who also loses his shot at a birdie. Third up is Jon Curran, who has a high probability of making his short putt, but his ball also just misses.
Now it’s Cejka’s turn, and finally somebody makes the birdie! But the game’s not over yet—Sam Saunders, the grandson of Arnold Palmer, can score a birdie with his 10-foot putt to take the game to another playoff hole. He lines up his putt, takes his time, and swings. At first it appears like the ball is going to go in, but it just kisses the rim of the hole and veers to the right. The crowd gasps and Alex Cejka scores his first PGA TOUR win on his 287th TOUR.
Imagine yourself on the fairways of the Bahia Beach luxury golf course. The warm breeze surrounds you as you inhale the fresh ocean air and embark on the same exhilarating golf course as the PGA TOUR players. Will you be able to beat their scores?