PGA Perez triumphs in Mexico to end seven-year drought

The 40-year-old American was playing just his third tournament since returning from an eight-month absence.

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Pat Perez of the United States plays his shot from the 17th fairway on November 13, 2016 in Playa del Carmen, Mexico play

Pat Perez of the United States plays his shot from the 17th fairway on November 13, 2016 in Playa del Carmen, Mexico

(Getty/AFP)
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Pat Perez fired five birdies in a four-under par 67 on Sunday to win the OHL Classic at Mayakoba in Mexico, claiming his second US PGA Tour title seven years after his first.

The 40-year-old American was playing just his third tournament since returning from an eight-month absence recovering from shoulder surgery.

"I was really calm," said Perez, adding that a more aggressive mindset had him feeling confident his comeback could produce his first victory since the 2009 Bob Hope Classic.

"I just had a lot of confidence when I came back," he said. "I started about 2 1/2 months ago and I didn't think it was going to happen this fast, but I thought it was going to be pretty successful, my comeback."

His five birdies came in his first eight holes on the Greg Norman-designed El Camaleon course in Playa del Carmen, and after one blip, a bogey at the 12th, he parred his way home to triumph with a 21-under par total of 263.

He was two shots in front of overnight leader Gary Woodland, who closed with a 70 for 265.

Scotland's Russell Knox was alone in third after a 66 for 266.

Kevin Streelman (65), Chez Reavie (67) and Scott Piercy (70) tied for fourth on 267.

Woodland got off to a slow start with bogeys at the first and third, but he claimed the last of his four birdies at 17 and 18 to secure second place.

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