2018 British Open: Brooks Koepka bounces back in big way

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2018 British Open: Brooks Koepka bounces back in big way

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2018 British Open: Brooks Koepka bounces back in big way

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Never, ever count Brooks Koepka out in major championships.

The two-time defending U.S. Open champion might have opened his 2018 British Open with a 5-over 41. He might have taken three shots to get out of a greenside pot bunker at the par-3 eighth, which he double bogeyed. He might have played the final five holes of his front nine in 6 over.

Yet through 36 holes, Koepka is very much still in this championship.

After rallying Thursday to shoot 1-over 72, Koepka made four birdies to post a 2-under 69 and move back into red numbers at 1 under. His stellar round was capped by a tap-in birdie at the tough par-4 finishing hole.

“Just hang with it,” Koepka said. “I felt like I was actually playing well. I just hit one bad shot, maybe two during that whole stretch (on Thursday). It’s links golf, you’re going to get a little bit unlucky and things aren’t going to go your way sometimes, but you just have to stay patient and keep grinding away.”

Koepka, ranked fourth in the Official World Golf Ranking, hasn’t finished worse than T-21 in his last 11 major starts. He’s also cracked the top 10 in his last two British Opens, including a T-6 last year at Royal Birkdale.

“If you look at his record in majors the last two or three years, you know, he’s got the perfect game to play in majors,” Koepka’s instructor, Claude Harmon III, said last month at Shinnecock Hills. “I think he probably plays more conservative in majors. We always joke that we wish we could get him to play the way he does in majors every week.”

Luckily for Koepka, this week is a major.

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