Runners and Ryders: Koepka shines at Shinnecock Hills as European list sees major changes

Brooks Koepka leads the United States points list after victory at Shinnecock Hills, while Tommy Fleetwood was on the rise for Europe.

Published : Jun 18, 2018 23:49 IST

Brooks Koepka overcame the conditions, the course and his nearest challengers to defend his U.S. Open title, moving him to the top of the points list in the race to qualify for the Ryder Cup.

After a week that saw the set-up at Shinnecock Hills threaten to steal the show, Koepka moved into the spotlight with his clinical one-shot victory on Sunday.

It was a far cry from his triumph 12 months earlier at Erin Hills - he equalled the tournament's lowest winning score when finishing 16 under par at the 2017 event - but the 28-year-old demonstrated his mental toughness to earn a second major at a venue that witnessed 397 double bogeys or worse over the four days of competition.

Dustin Johnson's hopes were dealt a blow on a disastrous Saturday that saw him sign for a 77, but the world number one still rises in the updated standings for the United States team.

Previous leader Patrick Reed drops down to third, while Phil Mickelson - who was hit with a two-shot penalty after putting his ball while it was still moving on a Saturday that will be remembered for high scores and a series of complaints from players over pin positions - slips out of the top eight altogether.

Tommy Fleetwood produced a sensational final round of 63 to set the score to beat in the Shinnecock clubhouse - and it could have been even better had he not seen a birdie putt on the final green stay up.

While the Englishman's late surge to two over was not quite enough for glory, his performance has boosted his position in the European points list.

Fleetwood, European points leader Tyrrell Hatton and Justin Rose all moved above Francesco Molinari, who remains in the top four and enjoys a healthy lead over nearest rival Rory McIlroy.

Still, McIlroy occupies one of the four qualifying spots to come from the world points table, despite the Northern Irishman missing the cut at the U.S. Open.

Matt Fitzpatrick is also in an automatic position after finishing in a tie for 12th, though Ian Poulter and Rafael Cabrera Bello are not far behind in the battle to make Thomas Bjorn's team for Le Golf National.

Many of the big names will be back in action when the European Tour resumes with the BMW International Open, while McIlroy remains on American soil as part of a high-class field at the Travelers Championship.


European points list (top four earn places)

1. TYRRELL HATTON: 3,559,896.72
2. JUSTIN ROSE: 3,307,263.76
3. TOMMY FLEETWOOD: 3,232,477.58
4. FRANCESCO MOLINARI: 3,225,221.47


5. Rory McIlroy: 2,168,607.14
6. Thorbjorn Olesen: 2,134,450.77
7. Jon Rahm: 2,101,638.06


World points list (top four not already qualified via European Points list earn places)

1. Justin Rose: 290.39
2. Tommy Fleetwood: 257.00
3. JON RAHM: 248.36
4. RORY MCILROY: 216.99
5. Tyrrell Hatton: 202.05
6. Francesco Molinari: 193.69
7. ALEX NOREN: 165.56


9. Ian Poulter: 133.48
10. Rafa Cabrera Bello: 133.17
11. Henrik Stenson: 128.06

United States points list (top eight earn places)

1. BROOKS KOEPKA: 8,840.409
2. DUSTIN JOHNSON: 7,809.287
3. PATRICK REED: 7,639.916
4. JUSTIN THOMAS: 6,711.373
5. JORDAN SPIETH: 4,795.306
6. RICKIE FOWLER: 4,356.227
7. BUBBA WATSON: 4,128.024
8. WEBB SIMPSON: 4,027.534


9. Bryson DeChambeau: 4,007.116
10. Phil Mickelson: 3,979.592
11. Matt Kuchar: 3,386.946


Next up

European Tour : BMW International Open, Germany
PGA Tour : Travelers Championship, Connecticut

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