Rory McIlroy ‘surprised’ by digging Brooks Koepka at Dustin Johnson

SAN FRANCISCO – Rory McIlroy took issue with Brooks Koepka’s remarks after the third round of the PGA Championship, noting that Dustin Johnson “only” had one major in his name when assessing his own chances at a third straight Wanamaker to win Trophy.

Asked afterwards on Sunday after a final 68, McIlroy said he was not impressed.

“It’s a very different mentality to bring golf, which I don’t think many golfers have,” said McIlroy, who has won four major championships but none since 2014. ” I watched golf last night and heard the interview and was just a little surprised by the kind of thing he said and whether he was trying to play mind games or not.

“When he’s trying to play mind games, he’s trying to do it to the wrong person. I don ‘t think the DJ really cares a lot [to] dat. But just different. I try to respect everyone here. Everyone is a great player. If you won a big championship, you’re a hell of a player. Doesn’t mean you only won one: You won one, and you had to do a lot of good things to do that.

“I mean, how hard it is to beat a man who’s 21 wins on the PGA Tour, that’s three times what Brooks has. ‘ ‘

Johnson took a 1-shot lead in the final round. His lone main title came at the 2016 US Open. Three previous times he held the lead of 54 holes in a major, and did not go on to win. He won his 21st PGA Tour title – only Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson have more among active players – at the Travelers Championship in June.

Koepka and McIlroy dueled twice last year, with Koepka dominating at the WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational and then McIlroy won the Tour Championship, where Koepka finished fourth.

Koepka said last fall that he did not see a rivalry between the two players.

“I’ve been here five years?” “Said Koepka.” Rory has not won a major since I’m on the PGA Tour. That I do not see it as a rivalry. ”

When he made the rankings on the final route, Koepka said he enjoyed his chances of pulling a PGA Championship three-turf … in part because he knew those against whom he was competed was not as spicy as him and that Johnson’s lone main title was four years ago.

Koepka won four majors and for the second year in a row tried to win the same major for the third straight year.

“I love my chances,” he said. When I have been in this position before, I have capitalized. I do not know, he only won one. I play well. We’ll see.”