Koepka wins PGA Player of the Year award

Brooks Koepka was named the PGA Tour’s player of the year for 2018 on Tuesday after capturing two of the year’s four majors.

The award is given based on the results of a vote by fellow tour members.

Koepka won both the US Open and the PGA Championship, despite missing four months of the season with a wrist injury.

He also became the first to win back-to-back US Opens since Curtis Strange in 1988-89, and only the fifth to win both tournaments in the same season. Tiger Woods was the last to do so in 2000.

Koepka wins the Jack Nicklaus Trophy.

“Looking at the list of the guys who have won this, Mr. Nicklaus, Tiger, so many Hall of Famers, that’s what you want growing up, that’s what you dream of,” Koepka said. “It’s an honour.”

Asked whether he could emulate Willie Anderson, the only player to win the tournament in three consecutive years (1903-05), Koepka said he would try his best.

“I’m excited to try and do it. The first time I defended a major I won it. I’m looking forward trying to win three in a row, especially at Pebble [Beach] (the venue for the 2019 US Open). You don’t put any added pressure on yourself, that’s not me, that’s not my personality.

“I’ll embrace everything and go from there.”

Asked if there was anything he could improve he replied: “I improved my driving last year.”

“My driver was way more under control. I hit a lot more fairways than what we’re used to. I’ve always been a pretty good putter, but this year I didn’t putt as well as I would have liked.

“Obviously, I putted well in the majors but other than that it wasn’t up to my standards and I’m working to improve that.”

Justin Thomas won the Arnold Palmer award for the most prize money for the second straight year after earning $8,694,821, beating Dustin Johnson by just $237,469.

Thomas became the first back-to-back winner since Woods in 2006-7.

Johnson, meanwhile, won both the PGA of America’s Vardon Trophy and the PGA Tour’s Byron Nelson Award for the lowest scoring average.

It was the second time he has won the awards in three years.

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