What's In a Name?
U.S. Open 2022: Folks, we got a “Justin Thompson” on the first tee on Saturday
Go ahead and take a closer look at the Wanamaker Trophy. Find the last name on it. It’ll be Justin Thomas, the 2022 PGA Championship winner. Thomas is men’s golf’s most recent major champ and the fifth-ranked player in the world. He’s been a leading voice in golf’s brewing civil war. To put it simply, he ain’t Joel Dahmen. JT is a quantity, enough of one that we can simply call him “JT” and you’ll know who we’re talking about. So there really shouldn’t be any issue for any first-tee announcer, whether in Brookline or Bangkok, when Thomas' number is called. Operative word: shouldn’t.
There’s no mistaking that, folks. That’s a big ol’ “Thompson” right there on the first tee of the U.S. Open, and judging by Thomas’ reaction, he didn’t particularly care for it.
The gaffe continued golf's proud tradition of first-tee announcers butchering the sport’s biggest names. It was also an ominous sign for Thomas. On the fourth hole a short while later, Thomas’ tee shot came to a rest near a fairway drainage grate, but he was not granted relief as the lie was judged to not affect his stance. His ensuing approach shot was wayward and he could be heard cursing the ruling enroute to bogeying the hole.
Tough to say one way or another, but maybe that Justin Thompson fella would have gotten a better break.