Brooks Koepka wasn’t coy in expressing how he felt about JB Holmes’ slow play on Sunday in the final round of the 2019 British Open Championship at Royal Portrush in Northern Ireland.
Paired together for the final round on a day with the worst weather of the week, neither Koepka nor Holmes played their best. Koepka shot 3-over 74 to finish T-4, nine behind winner Shane Lowry. Meanwhile, Holmes imploded on Sunday, shooting 16-over 87 to fall 64 places on the leaderboard into a tie for 67th place. That meant Koepka spent a lot of time studying Holmes and realizing that, while Holmes is one of the Tour’s slowest players, it’s not because of how long he takes to hit a golf shot. Instead, it’s that Holmes doesn’t play anything resembling ready golf.
“I’m ready to go most of the time,” Koepka said after the round. “That’s what I don’t understand when it’s your turn to hit, your glove is not on, then you start thinking about it, that’s where the problem lies. It’s not that he takes that long. He doesn’t do anything until his turn. That’s the frustrating part. But he’s not the only one that does it out here.”
Koepka has been an outspoken critic of players, like Holmes and Bryson DeChambeau, who take too long to play. The four-time major winner has showed particular frustration with players whose pre-shot routines, in his view, are too lengthy or don’t start soon enough.
The Florida State product himself does his routine and calculation as his opponents are playing. That’s the reason why, he says, the group wasn’t put on the clock.
“We were on pace for 13 holes,” Koepka said. “But I mean, if I’m in a group, we’re going to be on pace no matter what. I’m usually ready to go, as soon as the guy’s ball is coming down.”
In a cutting way, Koepka sort of complimented Holmes for keeping things at a modest pace — at least for the Kentucky native — given his struggles in the final round.
“it was slow, but it wasn’t that bad for his usual pace,” Koepka said. “I thought it was relatively quick for what he usually does.”