PGA Championship - Round Three
Credit: Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

Brooks Koepka never lacks for confidence. He’s been around the top of enough major leaderboards to believe he’s the man to beat if he’s within striking distance on the weekend.

The two-time defending PGA champion entered the weekend at 6-under-par two shots back of leader Haotong Li at TPC Harding Park.

Koepka, who is looking to become the first player to win three straight PGA Championships since Walter Hagen did so from 1924-27, let U.S. Open history slip through his fingers last year when Gary Woodland beat him at Pebble Beach.

Determined to not miss out on history again, Koepka arrived at TPC Harding Park on Saturday looking to mount a quick charge up the leaderboard.

He did just that, opening with three straight pars before sticking his approach shot on the Par-5 fourth hole to three feet, giving himself a stress-free birdie to get to 7-under, one shot off Li’s lead.

Koepka notched pars at No. 6 and No.7, while Li dropped at shot at No. 5 to put the two-time defending champion in a four-way tie for first.

A wayward tee shot at No. 8 found the left rough, but Koepka played a sporty chip shot to three feet to stay remain atop the leaderboard at TPC Harding Park.

Another loose drive at No. 9 could have proved to be an issue, but the ever-steady Koepka used his power to muscle it 201 yards out of the left rough, landing just short of the green. That approach shot gave Koepka 50 feet for a two-putt par, one he easily executed to make the turn at 1-under for the day and 7-under for the tournament, one shot back of Li who regained the lead with a birdie at No. 7.

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