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Justin Thomas cards nine birdies Friday at Waste Management Phoenix Open

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SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Justin Thomas has had a double bogey in each of his first two rounds at the Waste Management Phoenix Open, but on Friday, he took advantage of the scoring opportunities on the back nine and posted nine birdies en route to a 65.

Thomas left the course Friday tied for 10th and put himself in position to win in the desert. He’s finished third the last two years and is looking to finally break through this time around.

If only he could get a handle on the three par 5s at TPC Scottsdale this week.

“I’ve played the par-5s horrendous,” he said on Friday after bogeying the third, parring the 13th and birdieing the 15th. On Thursday he parred all three par 5s. “They really are great par-5s out here. I think that they have a lot of great risk-reward and you can make bogeys pretty quickly. I’ve had it in really good spots except for the tee shot on 15 yesterday, which wasn’t even a bad tee shot. I usually should be 4 or 5 under on those and I’m even.”

Waste Management Phoenix OpenPhotos | Leaderboard | Tee times, TV info

Thomas missed the cut last week at the European Tour’s Abu Dhabi Golf Championship, his first tournament since uttering a homophobic slur during the third round of the Sentry Tournament of Champions in January.

But this week is a nice bounce back inside the ropes.

“I’m very, very close to playing some really, really good golf,” he said.

And he likes being at a course he enjoys playing.

“I just like the golf course. I come in knowing that I don’t need my best stuff to win, which I think is huge. But I also know that I can do what I did the last 15 holes today, or whatever it is, 14, 15 holes. I really feel like I can reel off nine birdies in an 11- or 12-hole stretch, but I also understand and respect the golf course and kind of take what it gives me. If I get out of position or if it’s an uncomfortable pin or yardage.

“I also know if you get a day like today where it’s perfect, soft conditions, when you’re in position you’ve got to attack because everybody else is.”

original article link https://golfweek.usatoday.com/2021/02/05/justin-thomas-nine-birdies-friday-waste-management-phoenix-open/

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