BRooks Koepka makes an unexpected comeback at this Masters. The 32-year-old professional had disappeared from the field of vision of most fans after a long form crisis due to knee surgery and the move last year to the controversial LIV Golf league financed by Saudi Arabia. At the 87th Masters in Augusta (Georgia), Koepka surprisingly created a good starting position to secure his fifth title at one of the four highlights of the season. The American, who won both the US Open and PGA Championship back-to-back between 2017 and 2019, used his favorable start times on the first two days – late on day one, early on day two – to tackle the to push the tip.
After his brilliant opening round of 65 strokes on Thursday, Koepka achieved another top result in ideal conditions in the morning (27 degrees, no wind) before a thunderstorm ended the tournament day prematurely. With a round of 67 and a total of 132 strokes (12 under par), he was three strokes ahead of his closest pursuer. “I’m back where I used to be,” said Koepka. He only used the four par 5 holes on Friday to set himself apart from the competition. He managed an eagle and three birdies on these long fairways.
Severe weather interrupts the game several times
Jon Rahm, who also started the tournament with 65 strokes, is one of the 39 players who won’t be able to finish their second round until Saturday morning. But since interim results in golf show how far a player is under/over par (course standard), the Spanish world number three (9 under par), who was only able to complete nine holes, was in second place after the second day. The Norwegian Viktor Hovland, who was also among the top trio on Thursday, was fourth after ten holes (6 under par) together with the American Collin Morikawa (141/69+69 strokes).
On Friday afternoon, a storm interrupted the game twice before the organizers didn’t want to endanger fans and spectators any further and sent everyone off the field. The storm had downed three huge trees in the immediate vicinity of the 17th tee. Although many spectators were in the immediate vicinity, everyone was able to get to safety, so there were no injuries.
Before this incident, an outsider made a splash. Normally, for the amateurs – this time there are seven – it’s all about finishing the tournament as the best non-professional and being honored at the award ceremony alongside the new Masters champion as a “low amateur”. 23-year-old Texan Sam Bennett, who qualified for the first major of the year by winning last year’s US Amateur Championship, scored a lot with third place after two rounds of 68 for a total of 136 strokes (8 under par). higher goal: “I knew that my golf game was good enough to play at the front. Now I’m in a position to win this tournament.” A bold statement, because in the long history of this invitational tournament for the masters of golf, amateurs have only competed twice for victory. Americans Frank Stranahan (1947) and Ken Venturi (1956) both finished second.
While Tiger Woods can continue to fight to make the cut on Saturday morning, Bernhard Langer, the only German in the field, had to say goodbye to a favorite tournament after rounds of 74 and 75 strokes. With a total of 149 strokes (5 over par), the 65-year-old senior in the field had no chance of surviving the predicted cut of 146 strokes. The Masters champion complained that, like the day before, he had made many good shots, but had missed too many chances on the greens. At least he could take comfort in the fact that he was in good company – and even played better than one of the top favorites on Friday. The Northern Irish world number two Rory McIlroy also failed at the cut after a round of 77 and a total of 149 strokes.