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Brooks Koepka aims for rare three-peat

Brooks Koepka aims for rare three-peat

AFP
San Francisco
Brooks Koepka will be chasing history at the PGA Championship on Thursday as the two-time defending champion attempts a rare major championship three-peat in San Francisco.
The 30-year-old American is seeking to join Walter Hagen as just the second player to win the major for a third consecutive year.
After winning the 2018 PGA Championship, Koepka successfully defended his title last year at Bethpage Black and is now aiming to become the first to win three straight since Hagen captured four in a row, beginning in 1924.
“My game feels like it’s in really, really good shape right now,” said Koepka. “I like the way I’m hitting it, and it feels like I am putting it really well.
“Every day is a lot more comfortable. I’m excited.
“This is a big-boy golf course. I think it kind of plays into my hands.”
Golf’s first major championship of 2020 will be contested without spectators after the season was placed on hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Prior to its postponement on March 17, the PGA Championship was originally scheduled for play May 14-17.
This week was also the time set aside for the men’s Summer Olympic golf tournament in Japan.
The US PGA Tour has been back, minus spectators, since early June but will really kick into high gear over the next couple of weeks.
More than a half dozen players and several caddies have tested positive in the eight weeks since the PGA Tour resumed.
Players, caddies and officials are tested for the coronavirus before entering the grounds. Players also undergo daily temperature screenings and their clubhouse has been redesigned to allow for three metres (10 feet) of space between lockers.
“Some sports are struggling to get their seasons going and things going and figure it out. Luckily the PGA Tour and the entities have been able to provide a safe environment with testing,” said Spanish golfer Jon Rahm.
The PGA Championship launches the busiest phase of the disrupted season.
Following the PGA Championship are three weeks of FedEx Cup playoff events with the US Open on September 17-20 at Winged Foot near New York.
Lately when it comes to majors, the smart money has been on Koepka. But there is plenty of star power in San Francisco this week, including last week’s Memphis tournament winner and new world number one Justin Thomas.
“Last week is over with. This is a new week,” Thomas said. “We have a new field, new guys that are out here, all trying to win a major.”

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