August 26, 2019 / 3:39 AM / 2 months ago

Golf: Koepka shows himself human with final round fade in Atlanta

(Reuters) - Brooks Koepka proved himself human after all in the final round at the Tour Championship on Sunday when he was comprehensively outplayed by winner Rory McIlroy in Atlanta.

Aug 25, 2019; Atlanta, GA, USA; Brooks Koepka lines up his putt on the fifth green during the final round of the Tour Championship golf tournament at East Lake Golf Club. Butch Dill-USA TODAY Sports

Four weeks after schooling McIlroy in the final round at the WGC-St. Jude Invitational, the northern Irishman got his revenge and then some at East Lake.

McIlroy shot four-under 66, six strokes better than Koepka, to clinch the tournament and the $15 million payout as FedEx Cup season-long champion.

“Just one of those days where you don’t feel comfortable,” world number one Koepka told reporters after finishing equal third, five shots behind McIlroy.

“This week, just didn’t get it done. I don’t think I was going to beat Rory today, even if I had it.”

Usually machine-like and impervious to pressure, Koepka hit several wayward drives, including one pulled deep into the woods on the seventh hole that resulted in a lost ball.

The American’s putting also betrayed him down the stretch, as he missed a three-footer, a four-footer and a six-footer in quick succession to run up three straight bogeys.

“Those three putts I missed kind of took the air out of everything,” Koepka said.

His season will still go down as a great one, due primarily to his major record — victory at the PGA Championship and runnerup finishes at the Masters and U.S. Open.

But Sunday’s result will give his rivals, most notably McIlroy, confidence that he is beatable.

“I mean, I can’t bring it every day,” Koepka said, something his peers were starting to wonder about.

Reporting by Andrew Both in Cary, North Carolina; Editing by Ian Ransom

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