FARMINGDALE, N.Y.: A coronation nearly was a calamity however Brooks Koepka survived to win the PGA Championship for a second consecutive 12 months on Sunday and set up himself as golf’s new high canine.
The American, who had held a seven-stroke lead in the beginning of the ultimate spherical, nearly misplaced management of the title when he made 4 successive bogeys from the 11th gap earlier than staving off Dustin Johnson for a two-stroke victory at Bethpage Black.
Koepka shot a four-over-par 74 to complete at eight-under 272 and captured his fourth main title in his final eight begins in grand slam occasions.
Johnson (69) was second on six-under, with People Jordan Spieth and Patrick Cantlay and Britain’s Matt Wallace 4 strokes additional again tied for third.
What had appeared for a lot of the event to be a coronation nearly grew to become a calamity on Sunday, to the delight of a lot of the raucous New York gallery, who have been overtly cheering in opposition to Koepka as he walked off the 14th inexperienced with a tenuous one-stroke lead.
He has performed with a chip on his shoulder his whole profession, and listening to chants in his face of “D.J., D.J.” solely served to fireside him up as he walked down the steep hill and throughout Spherical Swamp Street to the 15th tee at Bethpage Black.
Johnson was taking part in the adjoining 16th gap when the chants went up after Koepka’s mini-collapse.
“I wasn’t nervous. I used to be simply in shock at what was occurring,” Koepka stated. “After they began chanting D.J. on 14, it really form of helped.
“That was in all probability the very best factor that would have occurred … helped me refocus and hit one down 15.”
Koepka’s taking part in companion Harold Varner III, nonetheless, was aggravated by the group response.
“I believed it was fairly bizarre how they have been telling Brooks to choke,” Varner stated.
“That’s not my cup of tea. I used to be pulling for him after that. I’ve a couple of alternative phrases for that. Simply cheering for him to do dangerous, I simply don’t get that.”
Johnson, nonetheless, subsequently bogeyed the 16th after misjudging his method shot within the sturdy and gusty winds and the lead was again as much as two strokes.
In turning into the primary champion to guide wire-to-wire since Hal Sutton in 1983, Koepka efficiently defended his title and likewise displaced Johnson as world primary.
Koepka, who additionally received back-to-back U.S. Open titles in 2017-18, admitted his run of bogeys had put him beneath strain.
“Inform you what, the hour spent from quantity 11 to 14 was attention-grabbing,” Koepka stated. “I simply received caught in a bogey prepare. I simply made errors on the unsuitable time.
“You’ve received to hit good drives and I put it within the tough. I problem anybody to play this course in 15-to 20 miles-per-hour winds and see what they shoot.”
“At this time was undoubtedly probably the most satisfying out of all of them for the way anxious that spherical was, how anxious D.J. made it.
“I do know for a truth, that was probably the most excited I’ve ever been in my life … on 18.”