KOEPKA CRUISES TO SENTOSA VICTORY

14 Jun 2024

Smash GC Captain Brooks Koepka continues his streak with a win in Singapore.

Koepka let’s one rip at the tough par-4 sixth on Sentosa’s Serapong course.

Bruce Koepka, Captain of Smash GC on the LIV Golf Tour, shot a three-under 68 at Sentosa’s Serapong course for a two- stroke victory over Australian’s Cameron Smith and Marc Leishman in the Singapore edition of the LIV tour. As a consation, Smith and Leishman’s Ripper GC continue their momentum with a second consecutive team victory.

The all-Australian Rippers overcame any concerns of a hangover effect after their emotional victory in Adelaide, shooting a final-round counting score of 10 under at Sentosa Golf Club to win by three strokes over Fireballs GC and Cleeks GC as the 2024 season reached its halfway point.

Australia’s Cameron Smith finished second but his Ripper GC took top team accolades.

“I kind of knew all year that we were going to get the ball rolling at some point,” said Smith, whose team finished at 32-under and moved to third in the season-long points standings. “I think internally that we’re the best team out here, and we’re going to be tough to beat when we all have our best stuff.”

Certainly, when Koepka has his best stuff, he’s nearly impossible to beat. The American is the first player in LIV Golf history to win four individual tournament titles.

Sergio Garcia and his Fireballs GC came in tied-second in the team event.

Koepka started the day with a three-shot lead, but a variety of challengers closed the gap throughout the round. Koepka never gave up the lead, though, and he bounced back from his only bogey – a three-putt at the ninth – with a birdie.

“I felt the heat, but it was mainly because of how hot it was,” Koepka said. “Just played very consistent, missed it in the right spots. When you’re playing with a lead, you do that. You don’t have to force anything.”

Koepka’s family was on hand to celebrate his victory.

The Rippers started the day one stroke back of Smash but grabbed the lead 11 holes into the round when Smith and Leishman heated up. The captain was six under during a 10-hole stretch en route to a 7-under 64, which tied for the lowest round of the day. Leishman was 5 under during a nine-hole stretch as he shot a 66. Matt Jones had a 70 while Lucas Herbert shot a 74 but steadied the ship after suffering a double bogey on his sixth hole.

The all-Aussie Ripper GC took the team title for the second time in a row.

“It’s amazing,” Jones said. “Last week was a very special week for us, but to come out here this week and do it again, it’s really special.”

The vibe was certainly different than a week ago when the Rippers had 94,000 Aussies hanging on their every shot. But the outcome was the same.

Jon Rahm of Spain remains the only player to finish in the top 10 in each of the year’s seven tournaments.

“It was certainly a challenge,” Leishman said of fighting the hangover effect. “It might have been a  blessing in disguise. Yes, we partied pretty hard for a couple of days, but then we all had Tuesday off. I don’t know if many of us left our hotel rooms.

“And I think conserving energy this week was pretty important, particularly for the end of the week when everyone is worn out. We were worn out, but I think just taking it so easy early in the week might have helped us just to have that little bit of mental strength that it took to get across the line.”

`