Shane Lowry on top of world after superb 66 banks top prize
Shane Lowry had a stunning maiden triumph on the PGA Tour, a superb four under par 66 taking him to 11 under and the top prize of $1,570,000 at the WGC Bridgestone Invitational at Akron.
Lowry thanked his family and supporters for their backing over the years.
"I know everyone back home will have been watching. It's great for my family and all the people who have supported me," Lowry said.
"I hit the ball so well all day," added the Offaly native.
Two-time Masters champion Bubba Watson was the Offaly Lowry's closest challenger a further two shots back.
And Lowry's triumph sets the scene perfectly for Rory McIlroy's expected return at this week's USPGA Championship at Whistling Straits.
The Ulsterman was unable to defend his Akron title as a result of the ankle injury sustained in a kickabout with friends just before last month's Open Championship.
Jordan Spieth's bid to replace McIlroy as world number one by winning his first World Golf Championship event ended in failure, the 22-year-old finishing with a four under par total.
Spieth completed a closing 66, his lowest round of the week, in style with a birdie from three feet at the last before looking forward to his duel with McIlroy.
"It's going to be great," Spieth said.
"I'm very, very happy that he is back, everybody is. He certainly takes the interest in the game to a different level.
"It will be cool to battle it out with him hopefully for the number one spot if it comes down to Sunday.
"I am certainly ready to be in that position and hopefully we can do so."
Graeme McDowell couldn't maintain his push for the WGC crown, the Ulsterman slumping to a three-over par 73 for a one under par total.
Ian Poulter suffered a dreaded "shank" as his chances of winning the title faded fast after an ideal start to the final round.
Poulter jumped to within two shots of overnight leaders Justin Rose and Jim Furyk when he holed from 12 feet for an eagle on the par-five second.
But the Ryder Cup star then ran up a double bogey on the fourth and dropped further shots on the sixth and seventh, the latter bogey coming when he shanked his second shot from one greenside bunker into another on the par three.