Brooks Koepka withdraws from Northern Trust over knee issue

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The knee issue that has bothered Brooks Koepka for the better part of a year has caused him to withdraw from the Northern Trust at TPC-Boston, ending his 2019-20 season and putting his status in doubt for next month’s U.S. Open.

Koepka is 97th in the FedEx Cup standings and needed a high finish to advance to next week’s BMW Championship. He’ll also miss the Tour Championship, where he tied for third last year.

Ranked seventh in the world after beginning 2020 at No. 1, Koepka withdrew due to a lingering knee and hip injury, according to the PGA Tour.

The four-time major champion had a stem cell procedure on his left knee following last year’s Tour Championship, then aggravated the injury at a tournament in South Korea in October. He didn’t play again until January, and it’s mostly been a struggle since then.

He finished seventh at the RBC Heritage after the PGA Tour’s restart and tied for second three weeks ago at the WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational. He was then just two shots out of the lead heading into the final round of the PGA Championship, where he was trying to win the tournament for the third straight year.

But Koepka shot a final-round 74 to finish in a tie for 29th, then missed the cut last week at the Wyndham Championship, where he did not blame his knees for his issues.

“My golf swing’s fine,” he said after missing the cut last week. “If I can physically do it, then yes everything’s fine.”

But Koepka has also complained about trying to get to his left side in his swing, and during the second round of the PGA Championship he three times had a trainer help with his hip during the third round of the tournament.

“It just locked up, cramped,” he said. “I couldn’t do anything with it.”

Since last year’s Tour Championship, Koepka has five missed cuts and six other finishes outside of the top 20.

The U.S. Open begins on Sept. 17, four weeks from Thursday.

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