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Brooks Koepka says crowd 'dinged' injured knee at PGA Championship

Brooks Koepka hits out of the rough on the 14th hole during the final round of the PGA Championship on Sunday on the Ocean Course at Kiawah Island in Kiawah Island, S.C. Photo by John Angelillo/UPI
Brooks Koepka hits out of the rough on the 14th hole during the final round of the PGA Championship on Sunday on the Ocean Course at Kiawah Island in Kiawah Island, S.C. Photo by John Angelillo/UPI | License Photo

May 24 (UPI) -- Brooks Koepka took aim at golf fans who attended the final round of the 2021 PGA Championship, saying the crowd "dinged" his injured knee several times at the Ocean Course at Kiawah Island.

Koepka tied for second place at 4-under par Sunday in Kiawah Island, S.C. He battled Phil Mickelson for the lead throughout the round, but finished two strokes behind the eventual winner. Louis Oosthuizen shot 1-over par in the final round to tie Koepka for second place.

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Large crowds smothered the golfers as they completed the round. Koepka said it felt like someone within the gallery tried to make contact with his right knee, which required surgery in March.

"It would have been cool if I didn't have a knee injury and got dinged a few times in that crowd, because no one really gave a [expletive]," Koepka told reporters. "If it was fine, it would have been cool. It's cool for Phil, but getting dinged a few times isn't exactly my idea of fun."

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Koepka said doctors told him he still needs six months to fully recover from his latest knee injury.

"I was just trying to protect my knee," Koepka said. "I don't think anyone really understands until you come out of surgery. ... Even doing rehab and [with] five people around your knee, you get a little skittish. I don't mind waiting or being in the crowd. It felt like somebody tried to [injure the knee]."

A total of 10,000 spectators were allowed to attend each round of the four-day major tournament.

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Koepka, who said his poor putting was the main reason he didn't win, said his knee felt fine until the run-ins. He also hit the knee on his golf bag when his caddie was forced to stop quickly in the crowd.

"I don't know what somebody was trying to do," Koepka said of the fans who hit his knee. "If that didn't happen, I'd say it felt really good."

Koepka said he plans to take some time off to relax and rehab the knee.

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The Charles Schwab Challenge is the next tournament on the PGA Tour schedule. The tournament runs from Thursday through Sunday at Colonial Country Club in Fort Worth, Texas.

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The U.S. Open is the next major on the schedule and is set for June 17-20 at Torrey Pines in San Diego.

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Phil Mickelson poses with the Wanamaker Trophy after winning the 103rd PGA Championship at the Kiawah Island Golf Resort Ocean Course on Kiawah Island, S.C., on Sunday. Photo by Richard Ellis/UPI | License Photo

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