Masters champion Hideki Matsuyama had three birdies in five holes on the back nine and eagled the 18th for good measure for a five-stroke victory at the PGA Tour’s Zozo Championship.
It was Matsuyama’s first PGA Tour win in his native Japan, although he’s only had one previous attempt.
In 2019, Tiger Woods won the inaugural Zozo Championship, the first PGA Tour event in Japan, and last year the tournament was moved to California due to COVID-19 restrictions.
Matsuyama finished with a 65 and a 15-under total of 265 at Narashino Country Club for his seventh PGA Tour victory.
If there was any doubt, Matsuyama hit a three-wood to about 12 feet with his second shot on the par-5 18th.
Asked when he thought he had clinched his home tournament, Matsuyama said through an interpreter: “Probably my second shot at 18, that was probably the clincher.”
“It was one of my biggest goals to win in front of the Japanese fans here in this country as well.
“So happy that I’ll be able to accomplish that. Also, in 2019 Tiger won the Masters and went on to win the Zozo Championship, so I’m glad that I would be able to emulate that as well.”
Americans were tied for second at 10-under: Brendan Steele shot 66 and Cameron Tringale 69.
Australia’s Matt Jones finished in a tie for 18th, closing with a 69 to finish 13 shots behind Matsuyama.
Tokyo Olympics champion Xander Schauffele shot 68 and was at even par on the tournament, Rickie Fowler had his second consecutive 71 and finished at 3-over.
“It wasn’t quite the same experience, didn’t play as well, but I enjoyed being here despite the lockdown and COVID rules,” Schauffele said.
“I saw some of my family here, which was really cool. I don’t get a big opportunity to see them, so that was kind of the shining moment for me.”
The PGA Tour’s only stop on the Asia swing has attracted only three of the top 20 in the world rankings.