Brooks Koepka has had a stellar 2023 season, which has been on full display in Saudi Arabia this week.
After carding an 8-under 62 during Saturday’s second round, the five-time major champion finds himself atop the leaderboard at the final individual event of the LIV Golf season.
“Made eight birdies, 10 pars. Played pretty solid,” Koepka said of his round.
“I made a couple of good putts early on, which obviously helps with momentum, and drove it pretty well other than on one, my last hole. I never really felt like I had a chance to make a bogey. Pretty pleased with it today.”
Since LIV Golf utilizes a shotgun start format, Koepka started on the par-4 2nd hole, which he easily birdied.
The former Florida State Seminole made a par at the par-3 3rd before reeling off four straight birdies.
By the time he reached the 15th tee box—his 14th hole of the round—Koepka sat at 8-under with five holes to play.
A sub-60 round was undoubtedly possible.
But Koepka cooled off as he finished with five straight pars.
He sits at 12-under overall through 36 holes and holds a three-shot lead over Sergio Garcia and Charles Howell III heading into Sunday’s final round.
Bryson DeChambeau and Scott Vincent of Zimbabwe sit a stroke behind second place, at 8-under, four strokes back.
“Just got to go play a good round of golf,” Koepka said when asked what he must do to win. “Just keep doing what I’m doing. It seems to be working since I’m at the top. Just go play good and see what happens tomorrow.”
Koepka won the 2022 LIV Golf Invitational — Jeddah event over Peter Uihlein in a playoff. That marked his first victory on the Saudi-backed tour.
Now, he is in prime position to win on Saudi Arabian soil yet again, which would mark his third victory of the 2023 calendar year.
Of course, Koepka won the PGA Championship at Oak Hill and emerged victorious at the LIV Golf Invitational – Orlando.
His victory in the Sunshine State came one week before the Masters, where he tied for second alongside Phil Mickelson.
Koepka has three other top-five finishes on the LIV circuit this year.
If he does go on to close it out on Sunday, Koepka will finish third in the individual season-long standings, thus earning him an extra $8 million.
But unlike the PGA Tour, major victories do not count in the equation for LIV Golf’s individual points. If they did, Koepka would surely be at the top.
Nevertheless, he has an excellent opportunity to cap off a terrific and historic season at the Royal Greens Golf & Country Club along the Red Sea.