Tommy Fleetwood finds himself in Sunday's final pairing at the 2019 Players Championship, joining Jon Rahm, whose Saturday 64 rocketed him up the leaderboard into a one-stroke lead at 15-under 201.
However, Fleetwood and Rory McIlroy, who both managed 2-under 70 in the third round, are tied in second on 14 under par. So why is it that Fleetwood is going out in the final group when he played with McIlroy? After all, McIlroy literally holed out first on No. 18 at TPC Sawgrass, and conventional wisdom holds that the first in is the last out when players share a score in a golf tournament.
However, in this case, both Fleetwood and McIlroy played together and, therefore, are considered to finish at the same time because they share the same tee time. The decision to send either McIlroy or Fleetwood out with Rahm on Sunday afternoon had nothing to do with the literal moment their respective last putts dropped into the hole.
Instead, since the pair were considered to finish at the same time because they finished in the same group, the determination was based on who teed off first to start the round. Since Fleetwood went first today off the No. 1 tee , he is considered to have finished first. That's why he's with Rahm, and McIlroy finds himself perhaps favorably paired in the penultimate group with Jason Day.
Fleetwood was asked after the round why he would be going out last instead of McIlroy, and the Englishman himself wasn't really aware of why.
He surmised it was because he was better looking.
Some might surmise the power of Christ compelled the Tour to put Golf Jesus in the final group.
But, in truth, it was just how these things work.