Frustrated Justin Thomas launches into a tirade after having to play an awkward drain shot at the US Open

Frustrated Justin Thomas launches into a tirade after having to play an awkward drain shot at the US Open



CNN

Two-time major winner Justin Thomas has enjoyed many Happy Saturdays of golf. The 2022 US Open third round is unlikely to rank among them.

The writing may have been on the wall even before the 29-year-old hit his first competitive ball of the day at the Country Club.

“From Louisville, Kentucky – Justin Thompson,” the tee box announcer mistakenly called as Thomas prepared for his opening practice, prompting a puzzled reaction from the American.

After a strong start of three straight pars, confusion turned to fury on the fourth hole when Thomas’ tee shot landed on the edge of a drain in the center of the fairway.

Not entitled to a drop, Thomas continued to play the ball as it was, his errant shot sailing into a bunker well short of the green.

Watching the drain in disgust before the ball had even landed, to say the American was unhappy would be an understatement.

“That’s what pisses me off because so many other people would lie about being able to hit that, but it’s just like, ‘I’m not going to hit it,'” Thomas could be heard saying on the Sky Sports broadcast.

“I’m just trying to be a fucking good person. Fucking b******t.

Thomas then bogeyed the holeshot, ending the day with a two-for-72 that leaves him three over par going into Sunday’s final round.

Thomas walks with caddy Jim 'Bones' Mackay to the third fairway.

Generally, a golfer can only receive a drop ball if the lie affects their stance or the line of their swing. Discussing the incident, Thomas said he called an official to get a ruling on the shot, but – believing he wouldn’t hit the drain – decided not to ask for a free drop “in spirit Game”.

“I felt like I could have very easily told him that I was going to [hit the drain] and got free shipping,” Thomas told reporters.

“It is very clear that my position has been altered and poorly seated because of this drain,” he added.

Thomas of the United States plays an approach shot on the first hole.

This isn’t the first unconventional hit seen at Brookline this week. MJ Daffue made sure a group of lucky fans got their money’s worth on Friday when he hit a sensational shot from the welcome tent mat.

Unwilling to take a pinfall penalty, the South African spent his practice past a tree, a concession stand and a mass of spectators towards the fourth hole.

For Thomas, after starting with a promising 69 on Thursday, a straight 72 leaves the American having to make up seven shots to equalize compatriot Will Zalatoris, who leads the pack on his return to the clubhouse.

A 15-time winner on the PGA Tour, Thomas continues his second big triumph of the year after claiming his second PGA Championship title in May. His best finish at the US Open came in 2018 when he finished tied for eighth.

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