LOS ANGELES (AFP) – James Hahn’s first US PGA Tour win has been so long in the making, he’s not surprised no one seemed to see it coming.
The engaging South Korean-born American kept his nerve to win a gripping three-way playoff at the Northern Trust Open on Sunday with a clutch birdie at the third hole of sudden death.
Maybe that fan will remember watching Hahn coolly roll in a 24-foot birdie putt at the third playoff hole — good enough for a win after American Johnson missed his 12-foot attempt, with Casey eliminated at the hole before.
Born in Seoul, Hahn attended the University of California at Berkeley and turned pro in 2003.
He’s paid his dues on the lesser tours, including in South Korea and Canada and on the developmental Web.com tour.
During the years when he struggled to establish himself he worked non-golf jobs, including, famously, selling shoes at a Nordstrom department store.