Justin Thomas will have a very difficult time backing up the season he had in 2016-17 in 2017-18, but he appears to be trying his best. Despite a failed attempt to three-peat at the CIMB Classic in Kuala Lumpur last week, JT is in position to go wire-to-wire at the inaugural CJ Cup @ Nine Bridges after posting a scorching 9-under par 63 on Thursday in South Korea.
Thomas’ round included a pair of eagles, seven birdies and two bogeys, including one that came on the opening hole. From there, all Thomas was able to do was shoot a 29 on that side that featured a seven-hole stretch in which he didn’t make a score higher than a 3.
Thomas, the reigning PGA Tour player of the year and FedExCup champion, hit 12 of 14 fairways and 14 of 18 greens in regulation in a 9-under-par 63 that gave him a three-shot lead in the first round at Nine Bridges Golf Club on Jeju Island, South Korea.
Starting on the back nine, Thomas eagled both par-5 holes to make the turn in 29. He cooled off on the front nine, but birdied his final hole for the 63.
It was a strong comeback for Thomas, who had finished T-17 in last week’s CIMB Classic, an event he was trying to win for the third consecutive year.
— Flagstick Golf (@Flagstick) October 19, 2017
At Nine Bridges, Thomas bogeyed his first hole before setting off on a blistering stretch from the 12th through the 18th hole where he made nothing more than a 3, going 3-3-3-3-3-2-3. One of his four birdies came via a holed bunker shot at the par-4 15th and another came on a chip-in from the frnge at No. 16.
“It was a weird day,” Thomas said. “It started off with a really badly played bogey and then I went on a seven-hole stretch where I kind of went unconscious and that was pretty much most of my round.”
Thomas leads Patrick Reed, Marc Leishman, Scott Brown, Chez Reavie and Gavin Green by three strokes. Jason Day is five strokes back at 4-under par.
Here are the complete first-round highlights.
— — —
Keep yourself up-to-date with the latest goings-on in the world of golf by following the SwingxSwing Clubhouse on social media. We share stories, stats and breaking news on Twitter, keep the fun going off the course on Instagram and share any and all golf-related topics on Facebook.
Never be the odd golfer out when your friends are talking about the latest or funniest happenings in golf. Sign up for the SxS newsletter today!