U.S. Open champion Brooks Koepka said he was happy to continue being “overlooked” after defending his title at Shinnecock Hills.
The American became the first man in 29 years to win back-to-back U.S. Opens with a one-stroke victory on Sunday.
Now a two-time major champion, Koepka said he was unfazed by continually being considered outside the biggest names.
“I always feel like I’m overlooked. I couldn’t care less. It doesn’t bug me,” the 28-year-old said.
“I just kind of keep doing what I’m doing, keep plugging away, kind of hide behind closed doors sometimes, which is nice, kind of the way I’d like to keep it. Sometimes it’s kind of impossible.
“I’ve got my group of friends. Some of them are here this week. It’s special. This really is, to have everyone here this time because last time no-one saw me win it. Nobody was here. To have my family and friends here this week is really special.”
Who else? The @Lexus Top Performance of the Day goes to back-to-back #USOpen champion, @BKoepka! pic.twitter.com/1Lt6lAppnp
— U.S. Open (USGA) (@usopengolf) June 18, 2018
Koepka’s win in New York came despite firing a five-over 75 in the opening round, with conditions proving difficult for most players.
Such were his early struggles, Koepka – who finished at one over to win the tournament – was at one point seven over, and he paid tribute to caddie Ricky Elliott.
“I love the guy to death. I think when we were seven over, he told me, ‘Get it going, get it back. We’re not out of this thing.’ He was right. And just keep plugging away. There’s a lot of golf left. You never know what the conditions are going to do,” he said.
“I think he told me it was going to get easier, so just hang in there, and it did on Friday.
“But as far as today went, Ricky is honestly one of my best friends. I love the guy to death. He’s an incredible caddie.”