Justin Thomas’ difficult season continued at Royal Liverpool Golf Club.
Thomas, despite scoring an even score of 71 on Friday, missed the cut at the British Open after his first round 82. This is the third major championship at which he has missed the cut this season, and brings his total points for those four events to 41.
“I hit a lot of good shots,” Thomas said. “I make so many stupid mistakes and crazy things [are] pass, and it will be fine.
Thomas has won 15 times on the PGA Tour in his career, most recently at last year’s PGA Championship. He made the cut in his title defense earlier this spring, but finished T65. It’s the only major he’s been selected for this year.
Thomas is running out of time to fix his slump this season, and that could impact both his FedExCup Playoffs status and his Ryder Cup chances.
Thomas entered the week at No. 13 in the Ryder Cup standings, well below the top 6 automatic qualifying spots. The top six golfers after next month’s BMW Championship will automatically earn a spot on the team for the event in Italy this fall. Captain Zach Johnson will then pick the remaining six players to complete the squad.
Thomas has played on two previous Ryder Cup teams and holds an impressive 6-2-1 record. But with the way he’s playing, Thomas knows he’s running out of time, especially since he could miss the FedExCup Playoffs altogether.
“I tried to make it easy for Zach and get into the top six, but I don’t seem to want to do that with my golf,” Thomas said. “There are a few events left to try to make the playoffs and then do a little racing and try to prove a point.”
Johnson, who lost 2 under on Friday and made the cut in Hoylake, England, still hasn’t written off Thomas just yet.
“Well, as a friend and roommate, I’m concerned just because he’s my buddy and I know what he’s capable of and that kind of stuff,” Johnson said. “Obviously he’s a mainstay in this event, isn’t he. … Ultimately, this game is really tough. There’s going to be peaks. There’s going to be valleys. Hopefully whatever kind of non-peak he’s in, it’s short. I know he’s got a great team. I love his coaches. I like the way he…he works. He’s a worker.
“Guys with such talent who work hard and aren’t afraid to put their work in the dirt, if you will, not to be cliché, usually find it. It’s just a matter of when, not if. He is too good. I may be a little worried, like I said, as a friend, but I’m not worried about him because I know what he’s doing and I know what he’s capable of.
Thomas among the notables who missed the cut at the British Open
Thomas wasn’t the only big name to miss the cut this week at Royal Liverpool.
The top 70 golfers and ties took part in the British Open weekend, which eliminated golfers who finished 4 or less after 36 holes.
Dustin Johnson may have had the worst outing at the British Open. After his first round 3 over, Johnson carded a 10 of 81 on Friday to take it to 13 on the week. He finished with five bogeys in his last eight holes. Only nine golfers finished with a lower score.
Phil Mickelson missed the cut in a second straight major championship. Mickelson, despite birdie on the 18th, moved to 3 over on Friday and fell to 9 over for the week. He was in a solid position Thursday until the last two holes, where he went 5-over with a double and a triple bogey to complete his first round.
Tony Finau, Billy Horschel, Justin Rose, Shane Lowry, Talor Gooch and Joaquin Niemann also missed the cut.
Several golfers managed to sneak into the weekend late Friday. Scottie Scheffler reduced the number with a huge back-and-forth from the bunker on the 18th, which extended his cut streak to 22 events.
Bryson DeChameau, Rickie Fowler, Patrick Cantlay and Brooks Koepka also made the cut on the number. Defending champ Cam Smith eagled in the 18th to get to 2-over this week as well.
Brian Harman holds the lead at the halfway point after his 6-under performance on Friday. Harman jumped to 10 under the week, which gave him a five stroke lead over Tommy Fleetwood.