Koepka rises to number two, Woods 26th in world rankings

Ruben Hill
August 13, 2018

ST. LOUIS - Jim Furyk was mesmerized like everyone else at Bellerive Country Club on Sunday as Tiger Woods made a run up the leaderboard before eventually finishing second to Brooks Koepka at the PGA Championship.

"I'm in uncharted territory", Woods said. "What is important is how well Tiger has played".

The old adage that nobody remembers who finishes second is nearly always born out in reality, but you get the sense that this will be far from the case when the story of the 100th PGA Championship is told.

"I didn't drive well all day - I was hitting it left and right on the driving range, even with my sand wedge - so I knew it was going to be a struggle to piece together a round but I did", added Woods.

"To win two majors is really incredible", Koepka told CNN Sport.

As for the Ryder Cup, Furyk ended up with the same eight players who started the week atop the USA standings. The chances of him ever catching Jack Nicklaus' record of 18 are wafer thin to non-existent but another one is certainly doable. He was not a factor in any of the majors, though he was regarded as a central figure in the team room and helped reshaped the US model for the Ryder Cup.

"He's playing very well", Furyk said.

"I had to kind of figure this out on my own and it's been really hard - a lot harder than people think", he continued, in reference to his comeback from multiple back surgeries to return to a position of fighting it out during the final round of a major.

I didn't realize Koepka was still sizzling about this until Sunday night in Shinnecock. "I realize he's playing very well, and I'm excited to see that". Brooks was the 12th victor in-a-row to have finished inside the top-28 at Firestone the week before and he was the 17th victor in 20 years to have already won earlier in the season.

It came undone at the end but like Koepka and Woods, it was still a day he will never forget.

On the course itself, Woods attracted the biggest crowds and the loudest cheers as he went in pursuit of the overnight leader.

Players have the next several weeks to make an impression.

Having ended the 2017 season in 656th place in the world golf rankings, amid persistent back woes and off-course issues that had more than a few fans wondering if he'd ever play competitively again, Woods has vaulted up to 26th after Sunday's showing. The final pick will be made after the BMW Championship on September 10. Okay, we didn't see every single important shot on Sunday but that happens with Sky too and there was a noticeable delay between the market and the action but again, that's the same every week on Sky with the PGA Tour events (far less so with European Tour events). We'll all sit down and give him our input, who can contribute.

Furyk noted that the top eight already present him with some excellent pairings for the fourball and foursomes formats that are used during the first two days and account for 16 of the 28 points available. Spieth and Reed have been dynamic in the Ryder Cup and Presidents Cup.

"I think I read it correctly", said Scott of the two-metre putt that broke sharply across the hole and missed on the low side.

Nevertheless, Woods wowed everyone who saw him play, including a number of National Basketball Association players, who were following the action. He had a lot of putts that didn't go in as well - 64 looked pretty easy, to be honest. I mean, walking with players.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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