Koepka makes debut at No. 1 and hopes to keep rolling

SHANGHAI (AP) – Brooks Koepka is having the kind of year he only imagined in his dreams, and is not ready for it to end.

In June, he became the first player in 29 years to win back to the US Open. In August, he played his best golf amid cheers for Tiger Woods in the last nine at Bellerive to win the PGA Championship with a record score. In a span of 19 days in October, he was voted PGA Tour Player of the Year and won the CJ Cup in South Korea to reach number 1 in the world.

The trick now is to stay there.

makes its debut at No. 1 on Thursday at the HSBC Champions at Sheshan International against a high-level field that includes five of the six best players in the world and this year's top champions.

is number 1, "Koepka said." I think that's something that all golfers dream of and everyone wants to achieve. I'm looking to take advantage of that leadership, grow and be able to be number one for a while. The goal is not just to get here. It's to stay here. "

It does not seem easy.

He replaced his good friend and neighbor, Dustin Johnson, at the top of the world ranking, Johnson has his own score to settle for this World Golf Championship after tying the wrong type of record last year when he lost a six-shot lead in the final round, Justin Rose would come eight shots back to win.

Johnson and Rose have a chance to return to No. 1 this week. [19659002] Also in the field is Rory McIlroy in No. 5 and Francesco Molinari in No. 6.

Molinari is the only player who can defend the best year in the world, Koepka has the advantage with his two majors Molinari has his first major in the British Open to accompany a victory at Wentworth in the flagship event of the European Tour, the Quicken Loans National on the PGA Tour, and if that was not enough, the first European to go 5-0. in the Ryder Cup. [19659002] Koepka and Rose are in the same group in the first two rounds, along with Tommy Fleetwood. Molinari is playing with Johnson and McIlroy in another group of characteristics.

The only player missing from the top six is ​​Justin Thomas, who played the last two weeks in Asia.

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