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These Guys Are Good

Players 2024: This Justin Thomas dart from the rough was so good even he couldn't believe it

You don't want to start the Players Championship the way Justin Thomas started his on Thursday, feet clinging to the edge of a fairway bunker, ball buried in the TPC Sawgrass Bermuda, needing to dig out a heck of an iron shot to just make par. But that’s precisely what Thomas did, uncorking a beauty that hung high in the Florida breeze before coming to a rest about six feet from the flagstick.

Just another ho-hum GIR right? Not quite. The shot was so good—and so unexpected—that it surprised JT himself, who delivered a veritable spit-take after the hole-saving shot.

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If that isn’t the universal expression for “I don’t deserve it, but I’ll take it,” we don’t know what is. After his opening tee shot found the rough, Thomas was clearly expecting to start his tournament with a bogey, but thanks to the great and glorious miracle of strokes gained/approach, he managed to salvage par. We’ll see how much that matters come Friday’s cut or Sunday’s final round, but even if it doesn’t amount to much, at least we got another classic JT smirk out of it.