Tommy Fleetwood shoots 67, among early leaders at PGA

U.S. Open runner-up Tommy Fleetwood was once again on Lengthy Island for some other main, and as soon as once more he was once taking a look up at Brooks Koepka at the leaderboard.

Fleetwood shot a Three-under 67 on Thursday within the first spherical of the PGA Championship at Bethpage Black, which he had by no means noticed earlier than this week aside from in all probability to force previous it on his approach from New York Town to remaining 12 months’s U.S. Open at Shinnecock Hills. That is when the Englishman with the flowing hair shot 63 within the ultimate spherical to tie the event file — however nonetheless completed one stroke in the back of Koepka.

“It is just Spherical 1,” stated Fleetwood, who on the finish of morning play was once on my own in 2d position, 4 strokes in the back of Koepka. “Brooks does an excellent task at majors. I believe everyone knows that. I certain would not be stunned if he was once nonetheless there on Sunday. I believe whilst you get to majors, there may be for sure positive names and sure other folks that you have got to overcome, and as a rule positive names and other folks pop up at the leaderboard. However that is the recreation, and that’s the reason what we are right here for.”

Fleetwood hasn’t ever received a PGA Excursion tournament, however he has received 4 occasions at the Eu Excursion and has 4 top-10 finishes in 10 American occasions this 12 months, together with 2d position in New Orleans remaining month. He generally takes the week off earlier than a significant, however that wasn’t an possibility with the British Masters at his house direction in Southport, England.

Even if he completed the 3rd spherical at Hillside tied for fourth, 3 strokes off the lead, he drained at the ultimate day, capturing 73 to complete 8th. Fleetwood stated he had an endemic, however he declared himself able for the long problem of Bethpage Black on Thursday.

“I have were given no virus this week,” he stated after making six birdies and 3 bogeys at the par-70, 7,459-yard direction. “I have recovered, so I think a lot, a lot better, and it was once excellent getting right here and getting ready for a golfing direction I completely love. … That helps to keep you going simply.”

Fleetwood has overlooked the minimize in two of his 4 PGA Championship appearances, together with his easiest end a 35th at Bellerive remaining 12 months. That was once after his 2d position on the U.S. Open, when he overlooked an Eight-foot putt at the ultimate hollow that can have compelled a playoff with repeat winner Koepka.

Requested how he measures up in opposition to the chief, the rail-thin Fleetwood joked that Koepka is greater, hits the ball farther and has a larger financial institution stability.

However the greatest distinction is the 3 main victories — all within the remaining two years.

“I am clearly in need of the ones wins this present day,” Fleetwood stated. “I think like I am getting into rivalry and with a bit of luck it’s going to be a question of time.”


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