September 24, 2018 / 10:48 PM / in 23 days

Koepka headlines nominees for PGA Tour Player of the Year

(Reuters) - Brooks Koepka, who won the PGA Championship and U.S. Open this year, was nominated for the PGA Tour Player of the Year award on Monday along with Justin Rose, Dustin Johnson, Justin Thomas, Bryson DeChambeau and Francesco Molinari.

FILE PHOTO: Sep 21, 2018; Atlanta, GA, USA; Brooks Koepka tees off on the second hole during the second round of the Tour Championship golf tournament at East Lake Golf Club. Mandatory Credit: John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports/File Photo

The 28-year-old Koepka, who in June became the first U.S. Open champion in 29 years to retain his title and held off Tiger Woods in August to claim the PGA, will be a strong contender to win his first Player of the Year award.

The American faces competition from Englishman Rose, who on Sunday clinched the FedExCup and won two of the 18 events he entered this year.

World number one Johnson had three wins in 20 events with 12 top-10 finishes and 19 made cuts to earn the nomination for the award he won in 2016.

Last year’s Player of the Year Thomas won three of the 23 events he entered this season and recorded 10 top-10 finishes among 21 made cuts.

DeChambeau, who won three events and had nine top-10 finishes and Italian Molinari, who won two events and had five top-10 finishes, are also in the mix for the award.

Voting for the honor, known as the Jack Nicklaus Award, will close on Oct. 1, with the winners announced that week.

Austin Cook, Japan’s Satoshi Kodaira, Keith Mitchell, Chile’s Joaquin Niemann and Aaron Wise were the five nominees for the PGA Tour Rookie of the Year award.

Both awards are determined by a vote among PGA Tour members who played in at least 15 official money events during the 2017-18 season eligible to participate.

Reporting by Rory Carroll; Editing by Ken Ferris

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