Cancun is a place for special occasions, which is why Mike and Joni Thomas are spending a few relaxing days in the Mexican paradise, soaking up the sights and celebrating their anniversary.
And after a scintillating Saturday display, all the pieces are in place for the festivities to finish on a truly high note.
The Thomas’ son, Justin, used a stretch of five birdies in his final seven holes to jump near the top of the leaderboard at the Mayakoba Golf Championship on Saturday. He finished his bogey-free day with a 62, one off Roland Thatcher’s tournament record set back in 2008. He sits at 12 under after three rounds at El Camaleon Golf Club, four shots behind leader Emiliano Grillo, but within striking distance of a 14th PGA Tour victory.
Spending time walking the fairways at Tour events is nothing new to Joni Thomas, who attends many of the tournaments. But with the pandemic, it’s been tougher for Thomas’ parents to consistently take part. They have picked their spots, however, and his father famously hopped in on JT’s bag over the summer when caddie Jimmy Johnson went ill.
“I’m sure my mom’s looking for any excuse to come to a tournament. Yeah, their anniversary was earlier this week. She was just going to be sitting at home in Florida, so figured why not come to Mexico here and enjoy it,” Thomas said. “She’s been able to come out, which has been great. Anytime I get to see them, and everybody out here knows my mom comes to about every tournament, so she’s missing the normality as much as anybody.”
And while the whole Thomas clan enjoyed Saturday’s jump in the standings, Thomas thought he was as good or better on Friday, when he shot a 67.
“I very easily could have shot 62 yesterday. I mean, that was I would say, I told my dad, the worst 67 in the history of golf I think it was (Friday). I played unbelievably, I just really struggled on the greens. They were pretty beat up and pretty slow and I couldn’t get the ball to the hole,” he said.
“I can’t imagine somebody shooting a worse 67 than I did yesterday. I felt like I could have shot 60, 61, 62 and shot that, so I just, I really just tried to go out there and didn’t really have a game plan or mentality, just try to hit the fairways and, with the ball in hand, just attack and make a bunch of birdies.
“And we did.”
If Thomas can manage to overtake Grillo, Tom Hoge (-15), Viktor Hovland (-14) and others on Sunday, he’d moved into the top spot in the FedEx Cup points standings. It’s a tall task, but one he’s certainly capable of. He’s currently No. 3 in the Official World Golf Ranking and No. 5 in the Golfweek/Sagarin rankings.
“I can’t really worry about what anybody else is doing, I just need to try to go out tomorrow and shoot another low one because you kind of can’t put a ceiling on this place when you’re playing it,” Thomas said.
“You’ve just got to try and make as many as you can.”
original article link https://golfweek.usatoday.com/2020/12/05/justin-thomas-mayakoba-golf-classic-parents-anniversary/