Justin Thomas denied free drop after tee shot lands close to drain throughout third spherical of U.S. Open


BROOKLINE, Mass. — As Justin Thomas ready to hit his opening tee shot within the third spherical of the 122nd U.S. Open at The Nation Membership on Saturday, an announcer launched the two-time main champion as Justin Thompson.

It wasn’t the final time Thomas would get a foul name from the USGA.

On the par-4, 385-yard fourth gap, Thomas ripped his tee shot 320 yards down the left aspect of the green. Sadly for him, the ball stopped a few inches from a drain. He requested a USGA guidelines official for a ruling on a free drop.

“To me it was round a drain and really clearly, in my stance and my ball was sitting in a different way than it might be if that drain was not there,” Thomas stated after the spherical. “I known as an official to get a ruling on it, and within the spirit of the sport, [I told the official] I wasn’t going to hit the drain. I felt like I very simply may have advised her that I used to be going to and gotten a free drop, however I wasn’t.”

Since Thomas stated he wasn’t going to hit the drain, the official dominated that he wasn’t getting reduction.

In a press release to ESPN, the USGA stated: “Through the dialogue, Justin was requested if the drain was going to intrude along with his swing, to which he replied it was not. As a result of there was no interference from the drain, Justin was not offered reduction.”

Below rule 16.1a(1) of the Guidelines of Golf, a participant is afforded reduction if “interference from an immovable obstruction exists when the ball touches or is in or on the obstruction, or the obstruction bodily interferes with the participant’s space of meant stance or space of meant swing.”

“The Rule goes on to state that if the obstruction is shut sufficient to distract the participant however doesn’t in any other case intrude, there isn’t a reduction underneath the Rule,” the USGA assertion continued.

After not being given reduction, Thomas sprayed his second shot right into a greenside bunker. After chunking the shot, Thomas made a number of colourful feedback to his caddie, Jim “Bones” Mackay.

“That is what pisses me off, as a result of so many different individuals would lie about having the ability to hit that, however it’s identical to, ‘I am not going to hit it.’ That is f—ing bulls—, man,” Thomas stated, earlier than tossing his iron at his bag.

Thomas ended up bogeying the opening. He completed 2-over 72 for the second consecutive spherical and is three over after 54 holes. Thomas and his group had been nonetheless steaming in regards to the ruling on the placing inexperienced after his spherical.

“Yeah, it is unlucky as a result of it was an excellent drive, and I had a pitching wedge in my palms, and I solely hit it 100 yards,” Thomas stated. “I imply, yeah, it’s totally clear that my stance and the place my ball was was altered and sitting dangerous due to that drain, however did not get a drop from it. That is simply how it’s. You might have to have the ability to hit the drain to get a drop.”

The excellent news for Thomas: He entered the ultimate spherical 7 photographs again earlier than successful the PGA Championship for a second time at Southern Hills in Tulsa, Oklahoma, final month.

“I might really feel higher if I used to be 5 – 6 photographs higher,” Thomas stated. “These guys have a number of golf left. Selfishly, for my sake, hopefully they will keep inside putting distance as a result of this can be a excellent place to submit. Hopefully, I can get sizzling tomorrow after which go submit a quantity and provides them a rating to have a look at for a few hours.”

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