US PGA Championship: Scott buoyed by Bellerive play

Marcus Newton
August 13, 2018

Only four other players have ever won the U.S. Open and the PGA Championship in the same year.

Tiger Woods admitted he never imagined being in contention in consecutive majors after threatening to pull off one of the greatest sporting comebacks of all time in the US PGA Championship. Koepka became the fifth player to win the U.S. Open and PGA Championship in the same year, joining Woods, Jack Nicklaus, Ben Hogan and Gene Sarazen.

"I got off to a really slow start, so I was not super comfortable early in the round", Scott told reporters.

Koepka is proving to be the prototype player for his generation and beyond - a 28-year-old workout nut who splits time between the weight room and the driving range.

"It's pretty obvious when Tiger makes a birdie". But even a final-round 64, Woods' best Sunday round ever in a major, wasn't enough.

"It's definitely moving in the right direction; I don't think it will be rocket science for (me) to figure out what's missing, if anything".

"I feel like I'm playing really well, the best I have in a while", he said.

Koepka was responsible for that.

For his final three birdies, Finau made a 13-foot putt at No. 14, a 9-footer at No. 15 and a 33-footer at No. 18.

The eighth and final automatic qualifying spot was still in limbo going into the PGA Championship, and Webb Simpson held on to secure his trip to Paris. But God, I hadn't played in two years.

"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.

Adam Scott hung around by making big putts, just like he hoped, and was tied for the lead until Koepka's birdies.

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Thomas Bjorn might have seen it coming. Furyk said Monday that if Woods is picked, he will add another vice captain although he expects plenty of input from Woods regardless. "He recognized who that guy was that day", Bjorn said.

Woods electrified the crowd with some superb shot-making, bringing roars from spectators to rival anything he inspired during his prime.

The 14-times major victor, who had whipped the massive gallery into a frenzy on the front nine, sent them into absolute hysteria with two more birdies at 12 and 13 that again vaulted him within one of the lead.

Koepka's triumph comes hard on the heels of his successful defense of the US Open title in June, with a final-round 66 leaving him on 16-under 264 as he claimed his third major in two years to join the very elite of world golf.

That was as good as it got. On Sunday, his drive at the par-5 17th hole veered right and landed in a hazard. In the middle of the fairway, with just 124 yards to the hole on the par 4, Thomas hit in the greenside bunker and failed to get up and down. If, after what was essentially four lost seasons, Woods is just now getting back into tournament form, he will certainly be a threat at majors next season.

With Mickelson and Woods two likely picks, it would make sense for Furyk to go younger with the others.

"What he did at Shinnecock, just bombing it, and then he's doing same thing here. And when a guy's doing that and hitting it straight, and as good a putter as he is, it's tough to beat".

Koepka joked about working out in a public gym this week with Dustin Johnson and not being recognized.

He needed Koepka to collapse over the last two holes.

He now is No. 2 in the world, with a shot at overtaking Johnson in two weeks when the FedEx Cup playoffs start.

Tiger laid up on the short Par 4 11th hole and then had his long birdie putt come up a hair short. He shot 68 and tied for sixth.

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