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"I could have definitely shot a low one": Brooks Koepka laments Open putting woes in second round 69 at Royal Portrush

Brooks Koepka on the 18th at The Open Championship at Royal Portrush Golf Club (Niall Carson/PA)
Brooks Koepka on the 18th at The Open Championship at Royal Portrush Golf Club (Niall Carson/PA)

By Nick Purewal

Brooks Koepka is ready to fix the blip in his putting radar and home in on a history-making victory at The Open.

The Major tournament machine suffered a minor malfunction on the Royal Portrush greens on Friday, missing a string of putts for a 69 that left him five-under after two rounds.

The 29-year-old screwed up his face in disgust on the 11th, unable to compute a stuttering par - but ground straight through the gears for consecutive and vital birdies.

Koepka is bidding to become the first man in history to register a top-two finish in all four Majors in a calendar year, and knows Friday's back-nine boost keeps that dream alive.

"I haven't made a putt all week, so I just need to figure that out," said Koepka.

"If I can make some putts I could very easily be 10-under, maybe more.

"I would have liked to have holed things. It's frustrating, but you've just got to stay patient and wait your turn, like I did on 12 and 13.

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"So if I can just clean it up the slightest little bit I can be off and running.

"I'll go figure it out this afternoon, figure out why and whether it's a little bit of a read.

"Sometimes I've hit good putts and they just don't go in, other times they are just terrible putts.

"So I'll just try to clean it up and be more consistent.

"Just go on the putting green, make sure all the mechanics are there, the set-up and alignment's correct, and from there just make sure the stroke's solid.

"It's not really a speed issue, that's been pretty solid."

The four-time Major winner retained the PGA Championship this year, finished second behind Tiger Woods at the Masters, and then wound up runner-up to Gary Woodland at the US Open.

Heavy rain and wind cut through plenty of rounds on Thursday, while Koepka enjoyed far calmer skies on Friday morning.

Even if the rains come again over the weekend however, the Florida native insisted he can still cope.

"Today was a lot easier, today I could have definitely shot a low one," said Koepka.

"There were quite a few gettable holes. Like seven, to not get that up and down, and six the same.

"So it's a little disappointing at two-under but, at the same time, I'm close enough that if I play a good weekend I'll be in good shape.

"If the wind blows it could be five-under, if it's dead calm the scores could get up there, it's all weather dependent.

"I don't care, I'll figure it out when I get there.

"You've got to wait your turn, eventually you'll have some chances."

Belfast Telegraph Digital


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