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Toms takes stress-free route to Sony Open title

Monday, January 16, 2006

HONOLULU -- David Toms' heart is just fine, and it sure wasn't under much stress at the Sony Open.

With two quick birdies to seize control, Toms surged past Chad Campbell and never gave anyone else much hope Sunday at warm and breezy Waialae Country Club, closing with a 5-under 65 for a five-shot victory over Campbell and Rory Sabbatini.

It was the 12th victory of his career, and the first since Toms was taken off the course on a stretcher at the 84 Lumber Classic four months ago with his heart racing at 170 beats per minute. He had surgery to fix the problem in November, and answered any questions about his health with a dominant victory.

He was in total control of all aspects of his game, leading by four shots at the turn and never letting anyone get closer the rest of the way on a spectacular day along the shores of the Pacific Ocean.

Entertainment came from 27-year-old rookie Bubba Watson, a lefty with power not seen since John Daly showed up at the PGA Championship at Crooked Stick in 1991.

Swinging from the heels, he blasted four drives over 360 yards on a course with no elevation. A flip wedge into the par-5 18th hole set up a short eagle for a 65 that gave him fourth place alone in his debut.

This was a weekend Toms won't soon forget.

It started with a course-record 61 on Saturday that allowed him to keep pace with Campbell, and with a tap-in birdie on the opening hole, he never let up. Toms finished at 19-under 261, one shot off the 72-hole record at Waialae.

Campbell was coming off a 62, but didn't make a birdie until the 17th hole and shot 72.


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