Thomas clinches Ryder Cup spot; Tiger still 20th

Tuesday, 2018-08-07 00:51:29
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PGA golfer Justin Thomas hits his approach shot on the 18th hole during the final round of the WGC - Bridgestone Invitational golf tournament at Firestone Country Club - South Course, Aug 5, 2018. (Photo: USA TODAY Sports via Reuters)
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Justin Thomas moved into third place in the United States team points race and clinched his Ryder Cup spot on Monday, the day after winning the World Golf Championships - Bridgestone Invitational by four shots in Akron, Ohio.

The victory also moved Thomas past England’s Justin Rose to No. 2 in the official world golf rankings. Dustin Johnson remained in the No. 1 spot.

Thomas vaulted past Masters champion Patrick Reed in the Ryder Cup standings. However, Reed also as secured his spot on the US team along with the top-ranked Johnson and No. 2 Brooks Koepka. The other four automatic spots currently would go to Bubba Watson, Jordan Spieth, Rickie Fowler and Webb Simpson.

Bryson DeChambeau, who carded three rounds in the 60s after opening with a 75 in Akron, is at No. 9, followed by Phil Mickelson, Xander Schauffele, Matt Kuchar and Tony Finau. Tiger Woods remained at No. 20 following his tie for 31st. He’s 63 points behind Zach Johnson and also dropped one spot to No. 51 in the world.

The final four automatic spots on the US Ryder Cup team will be determined after this week’s PGA Championship, with players earning two points per US$1,000 in prize money. Three additional spots will be named by captain Jim Furyk following the Dell Technologies Championship, scheduled to finish on Sept. 3, with the final spot set to be announced after the BMW Championship, slated to be completed on Sept. 9.

The four majors in 2018 are weighted heavily in the US Ryder Cup team points race, with winners receiving two points per US$1,000 earned at the Masters, US Open, Open Championship and PGA Championship, and all other players receiving 1.5 points per US$1,000 earned. That’s compared to one point per every US$1,000 earned in regular PGA Tour events in 2018 leading up to the Aug. 12 cutoff.

The 42nd Ryder Cup will be held at Le Golf National in Paris this September.

Reuters