This year hasn’t been kind to Justin Thomas, especially with his performance in the majors.
The two-time major winner missed his third major cut on Friday after scoring 11 over 36 holes at The Open Championship.
He finished tied for 65th at the PGA Championship in May.
Thomas has just three top-10 finishes this year and is out looking not just at the FedEx Cup playoffs, which he won in 2017. With his recent play, a possible third straight Ryder Cup appearance is also in jeopardy.
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«Obviously I want to get to the Ryder Cup more than anything,» Thomas said at Royal Liverpool on Friday. «Honestly, I’m probably trying too hard to do it. It reminds me a lot of my first or second year on tour. I tried really hard to make that team for the first time. I’m in a very similar position.»
The top six American players in the FedEx Cup rankings qualify automatically. Thomas ranks 13th in that group. He is ranked 75th overall, with the top 70 making the playoffs.
Captain Zach Johnson will get six of his own selections, leaving him with a tough decision to make. Jordan Spieth, Collin Morikawa, Keegan Bradley, Tony Finau and a resurgent Rickie Fowler are also in the bubble. And while Dustin Johnson ranks 35th among Americans because he played in LIV, he’s played in five Ryder Cups, and his veteran leadership could be an asset.
«I’ve been trying to make it easy for Zach and be in the top six, but I just don’t seem to want to do that with my golf,» Thomas acknowledged. «I have a couple of events left to try to get into the playoffs and then run around a bit and try to prove a point.»
Thomas will be under consideration, given his performances in the tournament and the Presidents Cup. He has a 6-2-1 record in his two Ryder Cup appearances, with perhaps his most impressive win coming in his singles match against Rory McIlroy on the road in 2018. Thomas and Jordan Spieth are 4-2-1 in their seven team matches.
The Presidents Cup doesn’t have nearly the same hype or pressure, but Thomas has an overall record of 16-5-3 there. His record with Spieth is 8-2-1.
«I’d like to think my record is my best argument,» Thomas said. «I love team events. I thrive on them. I just enjoy it. Playing with a partner might ease me up a bit, relax me.
«I hate even having to wait for a selection. This is the first time since I first qualified that I have to rely on a captain’s selection, and it’s not fun, especially when you’re trending wrong when other people tend to. But I just hope I can finish this year strong and my record speaks for itself.»
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Thomas shot an 82 Thursday in his first round that ended with a quadruple bogey after he hit back-to-back greenside bunkers. He has had more rounds in the ’80s than cuts in the majors this year.
Brian Harman owns the two-round lead at 10-under, and Tommy Fleetwood is vying for his first major on home soil sitting in second at 5-under.
Associated Press contributed to this report.