Brooks Koepka Fires 62 to Lead in Memphis

MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE – JULY 30: Brooks Koepka of the United States plays his shot from the ninth tee during the first round of the World Golf Championship-FedEx St Jude Invitational at TPC Southwind on July 30, 2020 in Memphis, Tennessee. (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)

Defending champion Brooks Koepka matched his career best with an 8-under 62 to lead by two strokes after the first round of the World Golf Championship-FedEx St. Jude Invitational at TPC Southwind.

Keopka is coming off a missed cut in two of the past three weeks, but came out on fire with four consecutive birdies to open the round and nine total birdies on the windy afternoon in Memphis.

“I played good and drove it well, putted well, chipped it well,” Koepka said. “Did everything very solid. Missed it in the correct spots and never really felt like I was having to work too hard out there, so that’s a little different than it has been. I guess that’s why I put in all the work.”

Koepka will also defend next week PGA Championship at TPC Harding Park in San Francisco where he will be attempting to win his third consecutive PGA Championship title.

MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE – JULY 30: Rickie Fowler of the United States plays his shot from the 13th tee during the first round of the World Golf Championship-FedEx St Jude Invitational at TPC Southwind on July 30, 2020 in Memphis, Tennessee. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)

Rickie Fowler sits in a tie with Brendon Todd for second place at two shots back after opening with a 64.

“Today was an accumulation of the work last week and just freeing myself up and simplifying thoughts and just playing golf versus working on the range,” Fowler said. “I was able to get a lot of good work with the putter last week and get myself back into some better positions to free up the putter. I was pulling a lot of putts, I was kind of tense with it, so it’s nice to see things kind of pay off.”

MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE – JULY 30: Justin Thomas of the United States plays a shot on the 18th hole during the first round of the World Golf Championship-FedEx St Jude Invitational at TPC Southwind on July 30, 2020 in Memphis, Tennessee. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)

Justin Thomas can become the No. 1 player in the world again with a victory this week in Memphis. He fired a 66 and is in a tie for fifth with a group that also includes Max Homa.

BLAINE, MINNESOTA – JULY 25: Max Homa of the United States plays his shot from the 14th tee during the third round of the 3M Open on July 25, 2020 at TPC Twin Cities in Blaine, Minnesota. (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)

The current no. 1, Jon Rahm, who moved up to the top spot following his win two weeks ago at the Memorial, opened with a 70 to sit in a tie for 36th.

DUBLIN, OHIO – JULY 17: Jon Rahm of Spain plays his second shot on the 15th hole during the second round of The Memorial Tournament on July 17, 2020 at Muirfield Village Golf Club in Dublin, Ohio. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

Rory McIlroy was the top player in the world prior to Rahm and he could also regain the No. 1 ranking with a win this week. He opened with a 73 and is tied for 67th.

CROMWELL, CONNECTICUT – JUNE 27: Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland plays his shot from the 15th tee during the third round of the Travelers Championship at TPC River Highlands on June 27, 2020 in Cromwell, Connecticut. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)

Due to inclement weather in the forecast, tee times have been moved up to 7-9 a.m. CT in threesomes off Nos. 1 and 10.

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