NBA

US PGA Championship: Mickelson and Koepka set Sunday showdown

By Sports Desk May 22, 2021

Phil Mickelson and Brooks Koepka both shot 70 Saturday to set up a mouth-watering final pairing at the US PGA Championship. 

At seven under par for the tournament, Mickelson holds a one-stroke lead over his countryman entering the final round at Kiawah Island's Ocean Course after saving par on 18 while Koepka bogeyed the last. 

The 50-year-old Mickelson is the fourth player aged 50 or older to lead a major after three rounds in the modern era, which began in 1934. 

The others were Tom Watson at the 2009 Open Championship, Greg Norman at the 2008 Open, and Julius Boros at the 1973 US Open -- none of whom ended up holding on for the win. 

Mickelson has been resilient this week in South Carolina, though, steadying himself Saturday after going bogey-double bogey on 12 and 13 to make par on the final five holes. 

While Mickelson's resurgence has excited the fans, Koepka remains a model of consistency at the PGA.

He has finished at least tied for fourth in 12 of the last 13 rounds at the major, and he could become the first player to win the same major three times in a four-year stretch since Watson won the Open in 1980, 1982 and 1983.

Mickelson will be shooting for his sixth major title and first since the 2013 Open, while Koepka seeks his fifth. 

Louis Oosthuizen, who shared the lead with Mickelson entering play Saturday, managed just three birdies on the day on the way to an even-par 72 that left him five under for the tournament. 

American Kevin Streelman (70) is at four under, while Oosthuizen's South African countrymen Branden Grace and Christiaan Bezuidenhout are at three under after even-par rounds of their own. 

Bryson DeChambeau (71) was unable to gain ground on the leaders and enters Sunday five back of Mickelson along with Gary Woodland (72) and Joaquin Niemann (71). 

Jordan Spieth matched Billy Horschel for the low round of the day with a 68, and he sits at even par for the tournament along with Rickie Fowler (69) and Keegan Bradley (72).

Reigning Masters champion Hideki Matsuyama fell from contention with a 76, putting him at one over with the likes of Shane Lowry (73), Padraig Harrington (73) and Ian Poulter (73). 

Related items

  • PGA Championship: Morikawa and Schauffele share lead ahead of final round PGA Championship: Morikawa and Schauffele share lead ahead of final round

    Collin Morikawa and Xander Schauffele are joint leaders at the PGA Championship, with a host of contenders still in with a chance of triumphing going into the final round.

    Schauffele crucially recovered from a double-bogey on 15 to birdie his last two holes on Saturday. That meant he finished on 15 under, carding a second successive 68.

    Morikawa went one better with a four-under 67, so sits in a share of the lead in pursuit of his third major title, having recovered impressively from a bogey on two to produce a blemish-free round from there.

    Sahith Theegala is only one behind the leaders at Valhalla Golf Club, while Shane Lowry, Bryson DeChambeau and Viktor Hovland are only two off the lead.

    Lowry stormed into contention as he equalled the lowest round in men's major history during a sensational third round in Kentucky.

    The Irishman carded nine birdies and no bogeys to set a new career low and jump to 13 under after being eight strokes off the lead at the halfway stage.

    Lowry had the opportunity to produce the first '61 round' in a men's major history but missed the hole by mere inches on 18, settling for a record-equalling 62 instead.

    It is just the fifth time a 62 has been carded at a major, with Schauffele doing it for the second time on the first day at Valhalla.

    Robert MacIntyre and Justin Rose are also in striking distance, as they sit three shots off the pace after producing impressive rounds of 66 and 64 respectively.

    Rory McIlroy, though, is seven shots behind Morikawa and Schauffele at eight under, level with Jordan Spieth.

    And, after a tumultuous week, world number one Scottie Scheffler looks to have slipped out of contention after posting a two-over 73. He is on seven under in a tie for 24th position.

    As for Schauffele, he has had 12 top-10 finishes at majors, including two second-place and two third-place finishes. He has lead since round one and will now look to finish the job on Sunday.

    "Felt like I've had to work for a lot of my birdies the last two days," he said after round three. 

    "Haven't been able to make many putts. I feel like I'm still hitting the ball. Feel like I'm hitting the ball pretty nice. 

    "If I can just get the putter going a little bit, it should free me up."

  • PGA Championship: Lowry in contention with record-equalling round PGA Championship: Lowry in contention with record-equalling round

    Shane Lowry stormed into contention for the PGA Championship as he equalled the lowest round in men's major history during a sensational third round at Valhalla.

    Lowry carded nine birdies and no bogeys on Saturday to set a new career low and jump to 13 under after being eight strokes off the lead at the halfway stage.

    The Irishman had the opportunity to produce the first '61 round' in a men's major history but missed the hole by mere inches, settling for a record-equalling 62 instead.

    It is just the fifth time a 62 has been carded at a major, with Xander Schauffele doing it for the second time on the first day at Valhalla.

    Rickie Fowler had previously done it in round one of the 2023 US Open along with Schauffele, while Branden Grace was the first to do it at The Open in 2017.

    "I just went out there with the hope of trying to get myself towards double digits," he told Sky Sports.

    "I thought if I could get myself to 10 under today, I could give myself a chance going into tomorrow. I went out and got off to a great start, rolling putts in and felt great and just kept going. I enjoyed it. Myself and Justin Rose, we were great out there and just enjoyed every minute of it.

    "It’s pretty cool to do something like this, but there is a lot more to do tomorrow."                                        

    Rose played a 64 to finish seven under on the round and moves to 12 under for the tournament.

    Meanwhile, Rory McIlroy shot a three-under 68 to move to eight under par in the Championship, and reigning champion Brooks Koepka is now on four under after a 74.

    Schauffele, Scottie Scheffler and Collin Morikawa were among the later starters in Kentucky.

  • PGA Championship: Woods determined to 'keep fighting' after missing cut at Valhalla PGA Championship: Woods determined to 'keep fighting' after missing cut at Valhalla

    Tiger Woods vowed he would "keep fighting" after missing the cut at this year's PGA Championship.

    The four-time champion will be absent from the weekend at the second major of the season, having carded rounds of 72 and 77 in Valhalla.

    Woods concluded his opening round with a bogey-bogey finish, while he hit two triple-bogeys in the first four holes of his second round - doing so multiple times in a single round at a major for the first time.

    The 48-year-old, who finished seven over par and 19 strokes behind halfway leader Xander Schauffele, was making his first appearance on the PGA Tour since last month's Masters, and knows he needs to improve ahead of the US Open at Pinehurst in four weeks' time.

    When asked about his next steps, the 15-time major champion responded: "Just keep fighting. Keep the pedal on, keep fighting, keep grinding, keep working hard at posting the best score that I can possibly post. That's all I can do.

    "I got off to a bad start [in the second round] and the rough grabbed me at [the second hole]. I compounded the problem there at [the fourth].

    "[I] just kept making mistakes and things you can't do, not just in tournaments but in majors especially. I hung around for most of the day, but unfortunately, the damage was done early.

    "I need to play more. Unfortunately, I just haven't played a whole lot of tournaments. Hopefully, everything will somehow come together in my practice sessions at home and be ready for Pinehurst."

     

© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.