Brooks Koepka extends lead, breaks major championship scoring record


Defending Champion Brooks Koepka will head in to the weekend of the PGA Championship with a commanding lead after making scoring history on Friday at Bethpage Black

It was business as usual for Brooks Koepka during the second round of the PGA Championship as he followed up his course record 63 with a five-under 65 to post the lowest ever 36-hole total in major championship history on 12-under-par (128). 

Bethpage Black is not a golf course anyone could remotely describe as easy, but the World No.3 made it look that way at times for a second consecutive day as he extended his advantage over the rest of the field with another blistering round of golf. 

It wasn't perfect, but Koepka put together seven birdies and bounced back from two bogeys to give himself a seven shot lead heading in to the weekend - the highest ever leading margin after 36 holes in the PGA Championship.

And yet the leader wasn't happy with how he played, heading to the range after his round after calling his day's work 'a battle'. 

"This probably sounds bad, but today was a battle," said Koepka. "I didn't strike it that good. I was leaking a few to the right.

"But I don't think -- the way I hung in there today and battled it, I think that was probably more impressive than yesterday, not having your A game but still being able to shoot a great score. I was very, very pleased with the way I played today."

A bad day for Danny Lee (who began the second round one shot back) meant that by the start of his second round Brooks Koepka’s lead had increased to two shots, with Jordan Spieth moving in to contention with a four-under 66 to get to five-under as he searches for his own slice of history this week.

But Koepka was quick to reassert his dominant major form to distance himself from the rest of the field further with back-to-back birdies on his opening two holes to move to nine-under, and added a third at the par-five fourth hole after hitting his second shot to 17 feet.

His first dropped shot of the tournament came at the penalising 10th hole: Having sprayed his driver in to a bunker on the right of the fairway, Koepka landed his approach in the rough short of the green and failed to get up and down for par.

He recovered that stroke just three holes later with a spectacular three wood to 30 feet at the par-five 13th to set up a tap in birdie, and produced two exhibition approach shots to three feet and five feet at the 15th and 16th holes to move him to 12-under-par. 

An uncharacteristic mistake left him 67 feet from the hole at the next and unable to do better than a three putt-bogey, but once more he bounced back a few holes later with a final hole birdie to earn himself a seven shot lead. 

Sitting in joint second place on five-under alongside Spieth was Adam Scott, who carded the round of the day - a six under 64 - though it could have been ever better if not for a costly missed par-putt from under three feet on the 17th.

World No.1 Dustin Johnson, Matt Wallace, Luke List and Daniel Berger sit one further back on -4 with Kelly Kraft, who only got in to the field after Justin Thomas withdrew. 

Justin Rose sits in solo 9th after a 67, with Danny Lee and nine others (including Tommy Fleetwood and Rickie Fowler) rounding out the rest of the top 10 at two-under-par.