Dylan Frittelli grabs first career win at John Deere Classic, earns spot in The Open

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Dylan Frittelli picked up his first career win on Sunday at the John Deere Classic, and earned a spot in next week's Open Championship.
Dylan Frittelli picked up his first career win on Sunday at the John Deere Classic, and earned a spot in next week's Open Championship. (Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

It took until the last possible minute, but Dylan Frittelli earned his spot in The Open Championship — and picked up his first career PGA Tour win in the process.

Fritelli surged ahead on Sunday to win the John Deere Classic, carding a bogey-free 7-under 64 to grab the two-stroke win, his first on the tour.

“It’s still sinking in,” Frittelli said, via Golf Digest. “It means a lot. My focus this week was just to try and get some FedExCup points and try to move up in that top 125, and now, perspective is going to change big time.”

The 29-year-old, who started the day two back, had an impressive start on Sunday. Frittelli birdied his first three holes at TPC Deere Run in Silvis, Illinois, which launched him to the top of the leaderboard.

After another birdie on No. 8, Frittelli carded three more birdies on the back nine to seal the deal.

Russell Henley, who fired a 10-under 61 with six birdies on the back nine, came in second at 19-under.

Thanks to the win, Frittelli will hop on a charter flight on Sunday night from the Quad Cities to Northern Ireland for The Open Championship at Royal Portrush, which kicks off Thursday. The South African failed to make the cut in last year’s Open, his first appearance in the major tournament.

Frittelli, a two-time European Tour winner, has had a rocky year this season. He missed the cut six times in 21 appearances, and finished inside the top-25 just four times.

After missing the cut at the Travelers Championship last month, however, Frittelli settled in. He finished tied for 46th the past two weeks at the Rocket Mortgage Classic and the 3M Open, something he said allowed him to settle down this week. He was near-perfect all four days, too, recording only a single bogey.

“I knew I had to come out here and make a bunch of birdies today,” Frittelli said, via the Des Moines Register. “Nothing was going to change that, whether I was four shots back or one shot back. It had no bearing on how I had to play today.

“Luckily, I managed to have that mindset overnight. And when I got going, I felt really comfortable.”

The win launched him up the FedExCup standings, too. With just four tournaments to go until the playoffs begin, Frittelli skyrocketed from 154th to 48th — more than enough to qualify for the first event.

Still, Frittelli is excited for his sudden change in travel plans.

“Hopefully I can be calm by the time I get there,” Frittelli said, via Golf Digest. “It's going to be a fun flight.”

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