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Brooks Koepka to make first post-Masters start at next week's AT&T Byron Nelson

May 07, 2021

Kevin C. Cox

Brooks Koepka will make his first start since the Masters at next week's AT&T Byron Nelson. The four-time major winner was included in the field list published by the PGA Tour on Friday afternoon.

Koepka, who turned 31 on Monday, dislocated his right kneecap in early March and needed surgery to repair his medial patellofemoral ligament—brutal timing as he won the Waste Management Phoenix Open in February and finished tied for second at the WGC-Workday Championship at The Concession two starts later.

The injury kept him out of the Players Championship, but he did manage to tee it up in the Masters just a month after the operation—which, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport, normally requires a six-month recovery. Koepka was clearly in pain that week and could not bend his leg to read putts, eventually missing the cut by two shots.

“I worked my ass off just to get here, and then to play like this is pretty disappointing," he said that week. He then suggested he might not play another tournament before the PGA Championship at Kiawah, which will directly follow the AT&T Byron Nelson, but he's clearly encouraged by the progress he's made rehabilitating the injury in Los Angeles.

Koepka is a two-time winner of the PGA Championship, having hoisted the Wanamker Trophy back-to-back in 2018 and '19.

Koepka joins a strong field in the first Byron Nelson at TPC Craig Ranch, just ouside Dallas. The event was held at Trinity Forest in 2018 and '19 before the 2020 edition was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. World No. 1 Dustin Johnson will tee it up, as will Bryson DeChambeau, Jon Rahm, Jordan Spieth and Hideki Mastuyama, who will make his first appearance since winning the Masters.