LIV Golf’s Brooks Koepka re-discovers swagger in final PGA Championship tune-up

Guess who has his swagger back.

Through 36 holes at the Sentosa Golf Club in Singapore, Brooks Koepka holds a three-shot lead over Thomas Pieters and Adrian Meronk in LIV Golf’s seventh event of the season.

“Just kind of finding my own little swagger,” Koepka said after his Saturday 7-under 64.

“Pleased with the way I’ve played so far and just need to go another good round.”

In the weeks leading up to this tournament in Singapore, Koepka has not been at his best, outside of a recent 10th-place finish at LIV Golf Adelaide. He tied for 45th at Augusta National, a result he called an “embarrassment.”

“I think Augusta was a good wake-up call. I’ve had to really grind since then,” Koepka said.

“That really kicked things into overdrive for me. I really have had to put my nose down and grind a little bit harder. I even had to look my team in the eye and apologize. I’m not looking to do that again.”

Brooks Koepka, LIV Golf, Singapore

Brooks Koepka hits a tee shot during the second round of the 2024 LIV Golf Singapore event.
Photo by Jason Butler/Getty Images

The extra practice since then has paid off, as Koepka has played much better since his poor showing at the 2024 Masters.

He attributes this to his ball-striking, which has vastly improved.

“Ball-striking is finally starting to come around. The putter is heating up a little bit. I think that’s just due to seeing some better golf shots,” Koepka said.

“That’s kind of how it’s always worked for me. If I feel good striking it, you have a few more opportunities and a few more better looks. Instead of being 30 feet, it might be 15, which ups your chances tremendously. That plays a huge part, to be honest with you.”

Koepka’s first birdie of the round came at the par-5 4th, where the five-time major winner threaded a 3-wood through a set of palm trees and onto the green in two.

“It’s a bigger gap than people probably think,” Koepka said of that shot.

“I had to start it well right of the flag, so I felt confident I could start it somewhere on the green. It’s always a bigger gap than it looks.”

On the next hole, the signature hole at Sentosa, Koepka stuck an 8-iron to six feet and drained the putt. The soft conditions—thanks to a four-hour weather delay—allowed the field to attack every pin, and Koepka took full advantage.

LIV Golf, Brooks Koepka

Brooks Koepka and caddie Ricky Elliott line up a putt during day two of LIV Golf Singapore.
Photo by Jason Butler/Getty Images

Another birdie followed at the 6th hole, and suddenly, he sat at 8-under par and held a share of the lead.

Koepka settled down a bit after that, making six straight pars to remain at 8-under.

But more fireworks went off on the par-4 13th, one of the most challenging holes on the course. Koepka drained a 53-footer with nearly six feet of break to get to 9-under, which gave him all sorts of momentum.

On the next hole, Koepka nearly made an ace on the 180-yard par-3 and quickly got to 10-under.

Two more birdies followed on 16 and 18, the latter of which came thanks to a 20-foot make.

“I just wanted to go out and play good golf, and that’s all I want to do, especially leading into the PGA,” Koepka added.

Koepka is rounding into form at the right time, with the PGA Championship now only two weeks away. He will arrive at Valhalla Golf Club in Louisville, Kentucky, as the defending champion, looking to successfully defend a major title for the third time in his career.

But before he can fully focus on winning a fourth Wanamaker Trophy, Koepka has a job to finish in Singapore, where a fourth career LIV Golf victory is well within reach.

Jack Milko is a golf staff writer for SB Nation’s Playing Through. Be sure to check out @_PlayingThrough for more golf coverage. You can follow him on Twitter @jack_milko as well.

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