Justin Thomas withdraws from 2019 PGA Championship field due to wrist injury
Thomas won his lone major title at the PGA Championship in 2017
Justin Thomas withdrew from the 2019 PGA Championship on Monday due to a wrist injury that also kept him out of the Wells Fargo Championship earlier this month. Thomas, the 2017 PGA Championship winner, finished T12 at the Masters, which is the last tournament he played this season. He had four top 10s in five events to start 2019.
"Unfortunately, I will be withdrawing from the 101st PGA Championship at Bethpage Black this week as my wrist is not yet fully healed," Thomas said in a statement released on Twitter. "Obviously, as a past champion, this tournament is extra special to me. It consistently has the strongest field in golf and I'm disappointed to not be among those competing this year, but I'm optimistic about a return in the near future."
Thomas was one of the handful of favorites at Bethpage Black this week, as he should have been. Only five golfers have beaten him in the last two PGAs, and he finished T10 at the 2016 Barclays at Bethpage. In fact, he probably should have been even higher up the list of oddsmakers' favorites.
An injury like this keeping somebody like Thomas out of a major should be taken seriously regarding the future. There are few golfers (if any) who crave the competition of a major championship and desire those four trophies more than Thomas, especially at a course where he's had success before and a tournament he's cruised at the last two seasons.
Though he pulled out of Quail Hollow (where he actually won the 2017 PGA Championship) two weeks ago, there didn't seem to be a ton of cause for concern as it was presumed to be cautionary and other golfers were relaxing and taking time off between the first two majors of 2019. Now there is certainly cause for concern as the rest of Thomas' 2019 major slate (at least) seems up in the air.
Thomas is currently ranked No. 5 in the world, and as of now, he will be the only top 100 player in the Official World Golf Rankings not in attendance at Bethpage. He's also one of just three golfers on the PGA Tour averaging more than 2.0 strokes gained per round on the field this season, an achievement he shares with Rory McIlroy and Dustin Johnson. His last win was at the 2018 WGC-Bridgestone Invitational.
Kelly Kraft of Dallas, Texas, will take Thomas' spot in the field, the PGA announced Monday.
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