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Fred Couples shot the lowest final round in PGA Tour Champions history last week, making 12 birdies on his way to a 60 to win the SAS Championship by six strokes. It was impressive feat for anyone, but especially a player who is 63 and had not won for five years.

Couples became the first player to shoot his age or better in the final round and win.

And a couple of guys took notice, namely Justin Thomas and Tiger Woods.

Thomas said he built his practice schedule around the Bills-Chiefs NFL game on Oct. 16 and was switching to Couples’ round before settling on the football game when he saw that Couples had a commanding lead.

“I think he was on 17 or 18 and Tiger called me and he’s like, ‘are you watching this?’ I’m like, ‘yeah, pretty good game,’’’ Thomas said. “He’s like, ‘no, Freddie’s 11 under and he’s playing 18.’ Last I looked he was like 9 or 10 under, he was winning by a million.

“No offense to Fred, love him to death, but he was going to win. I was more interested in watching the football game. So I turned it on and watched him stripe it off 18 tee, stiff an iron shot and make the putt. Talked to him some after. He jokes this is the best putting week of his life.’’

Couples is a favorite of the younger generation through his various assistant captain duties at the Presidents Cup and Ryder Cup. Couples was a three-time winning Presidents Cup captain for the United States in 2009, 2011 and 2013. He’s also been a favorite of Woods’ for years and seemingly a lock to help Zach Johnson at the Ryder Cup next year in Rome.

“We kept saying to him, you keep playing like that, you’ll be just fine at the Masters next year, you’ll be able to start playing Tour events again,’’ Thomas said. “No, he’s the best. He’s so fun to be around and just joke with. I was—I mean, it’s pretty cool to do what he did at what, 63 years old? I should say 63 years young. We’re all happy for him.’’

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