Published: Sat, May 18, 2019
Sport | By Wilson Duncan

Brooks Koepka off to record-setting start at PGA Championship

Brooks Koepka off to record-setting start at PGA Championship

Yet just like that day out on the East End of Long Island when Fleetwood finished one shot behind Koepka, this time a little farther west on the Island he was watching as Koepka matched the 63 with his terrific opening round at the Black.

It will feel quite different Thursday morning when the first round of the 2019 PGA Championship opens with damp conditions and temperatures in the mid-50s. "I've just got to go out there and focus on me".

Johnson played alongside Spieth and reached 5 under for the tournament approaching the 18th, only to miss the fairway and go over the green. The defending champion may have shot 63 yesterday, a near-faultless display only blighted by three missed short putts that could have turned the spectacular into something borderline outlandish. Fowler and Spieth both bounced back from double bogeys on 10 to finish the first 18 holes under par, including birdies on 18.

Tiger Woods said he will stay aggressive at hard Bethpage Black in his bid to overtake PGA Championship leader Brooks Koepka after an opening two-over par 72 on Thursday left him nine shots adrift. I couldn't let my head get down. TV ratings for the final round of this year's Masters were up more than 41 percent over last year's tournament - a fact not lost on veterans like Steve Stricker, one of Woods' closest friends on tour.

The 43-year-old United States superstar opened with a double bogey at 10, added another at the par-3 17th and despite a 30-foot eagle putt at the par-5 fourth was unable to challenge Koepka after bogeys on three of the next four holes.

"It wasn't as clean as I'd like to have it for sure". Woods, a four-time victor of the Wanamaker Trophy, will have his work cut out for him on one of the toughest, longest courses there is.

The three-times major champion, who teed off at the 10th hole, bookended his round with monster birdies, a 40-footer at his first and a 33-footer at his last.

When does Tiger Woods tee-off in second round?

"We needed him to win a major". "You've just got to keep battling and find a way through it".

The 43-year-old American superstar's electrifying triumph last month at Augusta National has made him the focus of attention on the same layout where he won the 2002 US Open.

The group of Woods, Koepka and Francesco Molinari should draw huge crowds once again.

"I think it was probably the highest score [Koepka] could have shot, " Woods said.

Of all the adjectives thrown around to describe Bethpage Black in the buildup to the year's second major, fun was not a word that anyone had the gall to utter, but Koepka, who has used a mix of sheer athleticism, raw power and quiet confidence to dominate the sport, did seem to enjoy his bogey-free trip around a course that got the better of many big-name players.

Only two of eight prior players who fired major-opening 63s won titles, Jack Nicklaus at the 1980 US Open and Ray Floyd at the 1982 PGA. "I think once in a while, they have these major setups, and I enjoy the challenge". I was just trying to shoot the best I could.

"The course is not easy, but Brooks obviously made it look real easy", Perez said.

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