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US PGA Championship Branden Grace 'getting closer' in majors

The 'bridesmaid' tag is two-pronged - it means you're not the man but you're good enough to be close. Branden Grace is happy to be that guy.

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Branden Grace 'getting closer' in majors play

Branden Grace 'getting closer' in majors

(Omni Sports)

After Jason Day shook his bridesmaid tag, Branden Grace threw his hat in the ring to replace him after his strong US PGA Championship showing rounded out a consistent 2015 at the majors.

South Africa's Grace finished outright third behind Day and Jordan Spieth at Whistling Straits, despite two unspectacular rounds - by his own admission - to start his week.

The 27-year-old was a constant threat at the majors this season after getting cut at the Masters, as he finished tied for fourth at the U.S. Open and earned another top-20 result at The Open.

At one stage on Sunday, Grace closed to within one shot of Day - after carding three consecutive birdies on the front nine - but finished five back of the victorious Australian.

The European Tour player was pleased to be starting to make a name for himself at big events, something Day embarked on doing in 2010 when he finished tied for 10th at the US PGA.

"Obviously I'm getting closer in the majors, which I want to do," Grace told a news conference.

"I feel that the game is keeping up and the standard of golf that I'm playing is showing. And I don't have to step down for these guys.

"Jason was just a tough competitor this week.

"He played some marvellous golf and I don't think anybody would have caught him this week.

"But if those silly mistakes weren't in there, you never know what would have been the finish.

"But it's still a great week."

Grace and compatriot George Coetzee (tied for seventh) showed up major-winning South Africans Charl Schwartzel (tied for 37th) and Louis Oosthuizen (tied for 30th).

"I'm sure," Grace replied, when asked if he would be crowing to the former Open champion Oosthuizen and green jacket owner Schwartzel.

"They have been the front runners for a long time now after Ernie [Els], and it's nice for George and myself just to step it up and showing that this is where we want to play and give ourselves some chances.

"So, it's going to be a tough grind now coming in with these guys and they're going to start pushing as well."

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