Brooks Koepka aims thinly veiled attack at ‘brutally slow’ Masters rival
Brooks Koepka hit out at the pace of play after finishing runner-up to Jon Rahm in the 87th Masters.
Koepka took a two-shot lead into the final round at Augusta National, but could only card a closing 75 to finish joint second with Phil Mickelson, four shots behind Rahm.
The final pair took close to five hours to complete their rounds, although they waited on almost every hole and Patrick Cantlay – in the group ahead with Viktor Hovland – was widely held to be responsible for the slow going.
“The group in front of us was brutally slow,” Koepka said. “Jon went to the bathroom like seven times during the round, and we were still waiting.”
Hovland also appeared frustrated with Cantlay’s slow pace, playing his third shot to the par-five 13th while the American was still walking towards the green.
Koepka was bidding to lead from start-to-finish and secure the third leg of a career grand slam, the former world No 1 having won four majors in eight starts between 2017 and 2019 – a stretch which included finishing joint second behind Tiger Woods at Augusta in 2019.
The 32-year-old struggled to reproduce that form as he battled a succession of injuries in the last two years, but believes he can add to his major tally going forward.
“I’ve known this for a while, but I guess it was just a matter of going out and doing it,” he said. “I led for three rounds and just didn’t do it on the last day, that’s it. Plain and simple.
“Eventually this will be a positive. I’d say probably give it a week and I’ll start to see some positives out of it and carry this over to the PGA, the US Open and The Open.
“But right now, it’s kind of tough to see, if I’m honest, probably for the next few hours and the next few days.”