Koepka: No rivalry with McIlroy

19 Octobre, 2019, 05:25 | Auteur: Adelaide Bullion
  • Jordan Spieth watches his tee shot on the 18th hole during the second round of the BMW Championship golf tournament at Medinah Country Club in Medinah Ill. Spieth returns from the longest break of a calendar year

Koepka, meanwhile, won the US PGA Championship and had chances to claim The Masters and the US Open for a third successive year.

But don't call them rivals.

Koepka, whose closest challenger in the world rankings is McIlroy, pointed out that the Northern Irishman hasn't won a major since the American joined the PGA Tour in 2015.

"I have been here for five years".

Jeju - Rising star Viktor Hovland set a PGA Tour record in the opening round of the CJ Cup in South Korea on Thursday when he shot a three-under par 69 - his 18th consecutive round in the 60s. "So, I do not consider it a rivalry".

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That actually is not true.

McIlroy was already a four-time major champion when Koepka became a full PGA Tour member in 2014, although has failed to add to that tally in the time that Koepka has won both the US Open and PGA Championship twice. Koepka finished tied for 15th at that event, seven shots behind McIlroy.

Speaking ahead of his CJ Cup defence, Koepka mischievously offered a reminder of this when the prospect of a rivalry with McIlroy was discussed. Four weeks earlier, Koepka had outplayed McIlroy to win the World Golf Championship event in Memphis and the Northern Irishman said that he had been determined to avenge that defeat in the PGA Tour finale. Spieth is looking to end a lengthy drought - he hasn't won since the 2017 British Open at Royal Birkdale, a span of 54 tournaments worldwide.

"To play like that alongside Brooks, get the win, win the FedEx Cup, it's awesome". But Koepka shines on golf's biggest stages - he finished in the top 4 in all majors past year.

US Open champion Woodland is looking to nail down his spot having been runner-up here a year ago, while former number one Spieth and 2018 Masters champion Reed need a return to top form to spring them into contention. "I'm not looking in the rearview mirror, so I don't see it as a rivalry", Koepka said. Reigning champion and World Number 1 Brooks Koepka returns to the Jeju Island course, as does 2017 victor Justin Thomas. I've got open road in front of me. "I thought maybe Brooks winning the PGA Championship this year was going to be the difference-maker, but you know, the other players thought differently", he said.

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