Koepka joins golf greats with US PGA win

13 August, 2018, 20:28 | Author: Amy Huff
  • Poulter's playing-partner Rickie Fowler set the early pace

Brooks Koepka has admitted he finds it hard to comprehend his place in golfing history after his dramatic victory in the 100th US PGA Championship.

As Woods electrified spectators by displaying the form that made him a 14-time major champion, American rival Koepka stayed calm and persevered under intense pressure to claim the Wanamaker Trophy and a top prize of $1.98 million (1.73 million euros). "I don't think it'll be rocket science to figure out the small little bits that are missing, and if anything this is motivation to make the most of this year. They definitely made me question it there for a bit, for sure".

Koepka, already with two US Opens under his belt, watched as the power duo rose from a huge pack at halfway in a pulsating final round, then did nothing more than play his final 12 holes in five under par.

Woods began the final round four shots behind Koepka and closed to within a shot three times, but Koepka crucially birdied the 15th and 16th before a wayward drive on the par-five 17th cost Woods the chance of a birdie himself. By hitting absurd recovery shots such as this one on No. 9 which led to a birdie.

"At the beginning of the year if you would say I would have a legit chance to win the last two major championships, I'd say with what swing?" "I was not hitting the best shots but I scrambled where I needed to".

"These fans were so positive all week", Woods said.

Nervelessly, he then ripped two huge drives down the 17th and 18th holes to effectively ensure his spot in history as just the fifth player to win both the US Open and PGA Championship in the same season, all on the back of a wrist injury past year that threatened his career. But he answered with four solid rounds at Bellerive, capped by a 69 Sunday that left him with a top-20 finish, while closest pursuers Bryson DeChambeau and Phil Mickelson missed the cut.

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"It's mind boggling", said the 28-year-old. It was his seventh runner-up finish.

"I've won three of the last six I've played in, so I guess (my game) suits the majors", a tongue-in-cheek Koepka said. I didn't really start that way this year. "You're going to have to make some birdies".

Woods, however, pounced with four birdies and a bogey on his front nine to get within one of the lead and with the 42-year-old in the running to win his first major since the 2008 U.S. Open, Tiger-mania was at a fever pitch.

"The roars were pretty unbelievable", second-ranked 2017 PGA victor Justin Thomas said. Earlier in the week, as he was cleaning out his locker after withdrawing with an injury, he thought back to Woods getting into contention at Carnoustie last month at the British Open. "This was the first real Tiger effect I've experienced with that many people".

"Then I didn't play the last two holes too well".

Scott hung around by making big putts, just like he hoped, and was tied for the lead until Koepka's birdies. "Everybody out here is so good and you look at this leaderboard and it's just. they are names that I've grown up watching that everybody else loves to watch play and it should be an exciting day".



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