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Tiger finally ends long trophy drought in California

ESPN staff
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Tiger Woods ended a two-year drought without a trophy © Getty Images
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Tiger Woods put an end to his long wait for a PGA Tour title by holding off Zach Johnson to claim victory at the Chevron World Challenge on Sunday. Last year he was agonisingly edged out by Graeme McDowell, but this time nobody could stop Woods ending his two-year drought.

Woods, at world No. 52 the lowest ranked player in the 18-man field, had not won on the PGA Tour since 2009. However, playing in an event that he personally hosts, Woods topped the leaderboard by one shot in California with a winning score of 10-under.

The former world No. 1 began the day one stroke behind Johnson after Johnson eagled the last hole on Saturday. However, Woods quickly erased that deficit with a birdie at the second, capitalising on his compatriot's erratic form as Johnson mixed two birdies with as many bogeys along the first five holes.

Both men then found trouble at the par-three eighth, dropping a shot to remain level, but Woods pressed ahead at the 10th thanks to a sublime approach that gave him an easy birdie putt.

Excitement levels truly rose when Woods found birdie again at 11, but the par-threes continued to prove a problem and a bogey at 12 kept things on a knife-edge. By the time Johnson picked up a shot at 13 the two players went into the final five holes all square.

Johnson pushed first with a birdie at 16 but then Woods sunk a nerveless long-ranger at the 17th to tie going into the final hole. Johnson applied pressure with an aggressive approach to the pin, only to be bettered by Woods. The less experienced player blinked first, and Woods - against a backdrop of silence - found the centre of the hole.

Victory lifts the 14-time major winner up to 20th in the world rankings, and promises great things for the year of 2012.

Elsewhere, England's Paul Casey put up an admirable challenge to eventually settle for third place. Casey carded a three-under 69 to finish within five strokes of the leader, leaving him to rue his opening round 79.

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