Estaban Toledo Wins Allianz Championship In A Playoff | Waterfront Properties Golf Blog

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Estaban Toledo Wins Allianz Championship In A Playoff

After Esteban Toledo made his par putt on the third playoff hole to win the Allianz Championship, he threw hinds arms in the air in excitement before a throwing a punch to finish it off. After all, the current four time PGA Tour Champions winner is a former boxer and still identifies with the sport.

“Threw the left hook. It’s just my thing,” Toledo said. “I’m a boxer. I’m not a golfer, I’m a boxer. I dominate boxing. This is my left hook when I celebrate something and it looks good, so I’ll take it.”

You could say Toledo found himself in quite the boxing match at the end of the day Sunday.Instead of a ring though, the match took place on the golf course when he found himself in a playoff against Billy Andrade. As in boxing, a playoff in golf can be a high pressure, intense setting.

“Being in a playoff is not that easy,” Toledo said. “It’s a lot of stress, it’s a lot of nerves, you against the other guy. You’ve got to bring your game the best you can and hopefully they make the mistakes and hopefully you don’t. So that’s pretty much in a playoff that’s how I look at it.”

It almost didn’t come to that though. Andrade had a five foot birdie putt on 18 that would have won it in regulation. He pushed the putt, one of the rare misses for him with the short stick on the day, and he and Toledo were headed to the fourth playoff at the Allianz Championship in the past seven years.

“I just hit a very poor putt,” Andrade said. “I probably hit the worst putt I’ve hit in quite a while. I got a little quick. I was thinking about winning instead of thinking about making the putt.”

Both Toledo and Andrade made mistakes throughout the playoff, with Toledo ultimately coming out on top on the third playoff hole. On the first playoff hole, Andrade’s approach shot ended up in the palmetto bushes short and left of the green, while Toledo was looking at about a six footer for birdie. Andrade miraculously got out of the bushes and after Toledo missed his putt they were off to the play the 18th hole for a second time.

Andrade once again made a miraculous up and down for par on the second playoff hole when his approach shot ended up against the bleachers short and right of the green. After taking his relief, he pitched it onto the green and made par to extend it to a third playoff hole on #17.

That’s when the luck ran out for Andrade. Andrade once again missed the green with his approach shot. This time, Toledo was able to make his birdie putt to extend his record to a perfect 3-0 in playoffs on the PGA Tour Champions.

The conditions on Sunday didn’t make it any easier for Toledo to climb up the leaderboard either. It was cold and windy at Broken Sound with winds gusting upwards of 20 miles per hour on parts of the course. In the end though, Toledo used that boxing warrior mentality to come through with the victory.

“I knew it was a tough day, conditions were tough,” Toledo said. “Cold, windy, 25 miles an hour. But I had my strategy. The 67 that I shot and somebody had to come up and get me, fine, accept it. But when you have a chance like that to be tied for the lead and go out there and try to win another tournament, that’s where my determination comes and my discipline. All this practice with my coach and my coach and my coach and my caddie, we’re able to trust those two things so I can go up on the golf course and trust whatever I learn from weeks before. That’s my strategy. I don’t give up in my things and I fight all the way to the end. I’m a warrior. It’s how I play this game.”

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About Dan Hauser

As an avid golfer and sports enthusiast, Dan has had a passion for sports starting at a very young age. Dan’s other passion has always been writing. Since the time he could write, he has always enjoyed sharing information with people and telling stories through writing. In middle school he combined his two loves by joining the school newspaper in the sports department.