Justin Thomas’ quadruple-bogey 9 leads to highest score of major career

justin thomas hits bunker shot

Justin Thomas carded a quadruple-bogey on his final hole of the opening round at The Open.

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The opening round of The Open was not kind to Justin Thomas.

Teeing off at 9:48 a.m. ET, the two-time major winner started the final men’s major of the year with a disappointing bogey, chipping into a greenside bunker from short and right of the green with his third shot. No matter, he bounced back a few holes later with a birdie on the par-5 5th to get back to level par.

That 4 would be one of the few bright spots on an otherwise disastrous Thursday at Royal Liverpool.

Thomas bogeyed the two remaining par-3s on the outward nine, and added a double bogey at the 7th, to make the turn at four-over. But rock bottom was still yet to come.

He tacked on two more bogeys and a double on the back nine, with just a lone birdie on the card, as he stepped to the 18th tee seven-over for the day. Needing par just to get in the house in the high 70s is never a great place to be, but things were about to get much, much worse.

Thomas’ drive on the par-5 finisher flared right, finding the internal OB hugging the fairway, and he was forced to reload for his third shot. His second tee ball found the short stuff, but he hit his approach into the devilish pot bunker guarding the front of the green.

With virtually zero chance to get his ball on the putting surface, Thomas opted to play out sideways … directly into the adjacent bunker. Left with limited options once again, he played out sideways into the thick rough near the grandstand. He then hacked his seventh shot onto the green, took two putts from there and plucked his ball out of the hole with an ugly quadruple-bogey 9 on the scorecard.

“This has been a disastrous day for Justin Thomas,” analyst Paul Azinger said on the USA broadcast. “It’s a lonely feeling. He’s really going through something.”

Disastrous indeed. Thomas’ face told the whole story as he wore a look of dejection on his face as he walked off the 18th green toward scoring.

Thomas’ 11-over 82 is a career-worst in majors and is just the latest in a string of disappointing play for the 15-time PGA Tour winner this season. He’s finished inside the top 10 just three times in 2023 and has yet to record a win. Worse yet, in the major championships, he’s missed two cuts and finished T65 in his best showing.

With his disastrous 82 on the board Thursday evening, Thomas is beating just one player in the field, with another missed cut all but certain.

“When you have [confidence], you never think you’ll lose it,” Azinger said. “And when you lose it, you never think you’ll get it back.”

Golf is a hard game — Thomas’ struggles are just the latest example.

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