Koepka hopes to find form at Honda Classic

MIAMI (AFP) – Four-time major winner Brooks Koepka said he is fit and regaining peak form after a left knee injury as he prepares for the US PGA Honda Classic.

World number three Koepka, hoping to regain full strength in time for the Masters in April, has struggled in his comeback from a partially torn patella tendon in his left knee that required stem cell therapy last August.

He missed the cut last October at Las Vegas and withdrew while defending a title in South Korea after tweaking his knee, forcing him out of the Presidents Cup.

Koepka shared 34th last month at Abu Dhabi in his 2020 debut and shared 43rd two weeks ago at Riviera in his first United States event of the year, setting the stage for this week’s showdown at PGA National.

“I’ve just played bad,” Koepka said. “Knee is great. I wouldn’t be playing if I couldn’t play or if there was pain or if I didn’t feel like I could come out here and compete at my best.

“Everything is better than we expected it to be at this point in time. It’s stable. It feels good. It has progressed great. We’ve got it right where we want it, and it’s just now about building more strength around it and really understanding a different approach on workouts.”

The 29-year-old American will chase his third consecutive PGA Championship title in May at Harding Park in San Francisco and seek his third US Open crown in four years in June at Winged Foot just outside New York.

Koepka is hoping to turn around his fortunes this year with consistency and success at the Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, layout.

“It seems like I make a few birdies and then follow it up with a bogey, and any momentum has been killed, which is not usually how I’m used to playing golf,” Koepka said. “Hopefully it’ll start to turn around here. I feel good. I’m excited to play.” Koepka will take next week off before a run of three consecutive events, the Players Championship, Valspar Championship and WGC Match Play before another week off ahead of the Masters.

“It’ll be three weeks in a row for me, which will be nice to kind of have something to build on,” he said. “It has been one week on, one week off, where it’s not tough to build a rhythm, but it’s just a lot easier when you’ve got three weeks in a row to really find your game.”

Brooks Koepka plays a shot during the pro-am round for the Honda Classic. PHOTO: AFP