/

Ikeda retains Bridgestone crown

CHIBA (Kyodo) Yuta Ikeda successfully defended his Bridgestone Open title on Sunday, matching the course record with a bogey-free 62 for a three-shot victory.

Ikeda had five birdies each on the front and back nine to finish at a tournament-record 23-under 265 at Sodegaura Country Club.

The 24-year-old Chiba native pulled away with four straight birdies from the 13th hole before a birdie finish on 18. He needed only 23 putts in the final round.

“I played the best golf,” Ikeda said. “This is a golf course where I’ve played for many years. This is the first time that I’ve won a tournament back-to-back. This makes me think I’m closely connected with Chiba.”