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Brooks Koepka takes 2-shot lead in PGA Championship at Bellerive

Brooks Koepka takes 2-shot lead in PGA Championship at Bellerive

The two-time US Open champion followed his record-equalling second-round 63 with a four-under 66 on Saturday, lifting the American to 12 under and two strokes clear of nearest challenger Adam Scott.

Meanwhile, Brooks Koepka had dropped consecutive shots midway through his back nine, and that meant Scott was only trailing the U.S. Open champion by two heading into the final round.

Brooks Koepka lines up a putt on the 15th green during the third round of the PGA Championship golf tournament at Bellerive Country Club. Woods struggled early in his first round with a couple bogies.

Well, it depends on how you look at it.

Woods failed to convert on both, despite having given himself excellent chances.

Finau began this wild ride Friday afternoon with five straight birdies, four of them from between 20 and 25 feet, the shortest one at 12 feet.

At the 17th, after ramming his eagle putt through the break, he missed the 4-footer coming back. It was a massively squandered opportunity, one that could easily have seen him grouped with Koepka in the final pairing.

Spieth second-guessed his decision to try to hit a 5-iron out of the woods en route to the triple.

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Jon Rahm fired a bogey-free 66 to share third spot with Rickie Fowler and overnight leader Gary Woodland, while Woods sits a further stroke back in tied-sixth thanks to a four-under 66.

Woods shot 31 on the front and was primed to shoot 65 or lower and couldn't do it. At The Open after taking the lead on the back nine, he went double-bogey and bogey before playing the last six holes in 1 under. It is a trend he has yet to buck.

The challenge for the field will be to catch a player so physically and mentally tough that he lifts weights even during major championships.

Birdies were abundant early, a hint that scoring conditions might rival those of Friday, when three players made a run at matching the all-time low major round of 62 by Branden Grace of South Africa from last year's British Open. Koepka appears fearless with the driver. This golf course is very gettable. Tiger's driver still remains a liability.

Ten years removed from his 14th and most recent major title, he displayed shades of his pre-back surgery greatness with a near-flawless front nine on the rain-soaked layout. A lot needs to go right.

Tiger Woods, who won his 14th major in 2008, shot 66 to end on eight under. After the slow start on Thursday saw him play the first two holes in 3 over par, he has played the remaining 52 holes in 11 under.

It moved him to five under on his first weekend appearance at a major after making the cut. He has now been in contention or on the fringe of it several times, including at The Open, the Quicken Loans National, the Players, the Arnold Palmer Invitational and the Valspar Championship. He has posted four top-10s and should be feeling more comfortable in such situations. Why can't he do it again? "I've made, what I thought might take weeks, kind of a turnaround to be able to trust and hit some really quality shots and work my way up a major championship leaderboard in the span of hours". He has won tour events from behind, several from more than 4 strokes.


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