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Well let’s see you blade a bunker shot over the green on the first hole of the final round of a major that your in contention to win. What do you do next? Easy you whole a 14 foot bogey save then you step right up and birdie the second. At this point as a casual observer I’d say pretty good. As a professional coach who once competed full time I’d say that kid has a big pair of …. Oops …. I guess this still a family show. Can’t go there. Justin Thomas showed us not only great golf but great heart ❤!

He goes on to make the turn and on number 10 and hits a hard block and it’s headed for no where only to hit a tree and bounce back left over a fairway bunker and back into play. What next? He hangs his birdie putt on the lip for what felt like a lifetime, only to have it drop In for any birdie. When it’s your time it’s your time! Ask Freddie about Augusta and #12.

Later on the back side he wholes a short green side pitch out of the cabbage then goes on to birdie a long par 3 that had been giving the entire field a headache!

I’d have to say golf is extremely healthy with the advent of Day, Johnson, Speith, Fowler, Rory, Pieters, Reed, Matsuyama. Throw 8-10 other young bucks in there that are lurking in the shadows and WOW ! The talent pool world wide currently is absolutely amazing. Is Justin Thomas hands down this years lock for Player of the Year as many of the golf scribes suggest. I’m not that quick to crown him just yet with both the playoff events, The Tour Championship itself and The Fed Ex Cup still undecided. Matsuyama and Spieth could both catch fire and the whole bag of marbles would up in the air.

​What’s with Rory ? It’s another example of just how fragile the line in golf is. To my eye he is not at far of at all. It’s funny at that level how one great swing at the right juncture , one 9 hole burst , a quick infusion of confidence and a player with his talent gets right back on a role. I only worry about him as his body language seems so darn bad at times. Is the glass half empty or half full. The times I was around Tom Kite in the 90’s he could be hitting it sideways and say simply , “ahh it’s just a speed bump”. Meaning it’s a long journey I’ll get it back no worries. He was always up feelings he’d figure it out by Thursday.

​It certainly should be a great playoff run coming up . So many great sticks all playing well at the same time. Don’t be a bit surprised if one of those great talents just off the main radar gets on a run and we see the emergence of the next  Ricky, Jordon, or Justin. Who do you think is the next hot young stud who will jump up to challenge the current crop? Email me I’d love to hear each of your thoughts.

​I’m looking forward to getting back to paradise this late Fall. My lesson book will open Sept 15th and I’ll start teaching at Esplanade November 1st. I look forward to seeing everyone then.

Read my bi-weekly golf column at The Naples News.

Sincerely in golf
Tom Patri
President / Founder TP Golf LLC
Golf Magazine Top 100 Teacher in America
Golf Digest Top Teacher – NY State
GolfTips Magazine Contributing Editor
GolfTips Magazine Top 30 Instructor