Justin Thomas Wins PGA Championship in Playoff Over Will Zalatoris
Just in time, Thomas won the PGA for a second time with a Sunday charge while a war of attrition broke out around him at Southern Hills.
TULSA, Okla.—The 104th PGA Championship can be summed up in five words: Justin Thomas, just in time.
After Thomas somehow won his second PGA Championship, besting Will Zalatoris in a playoff, his visage holding the Wanamaker Trophy was already displayed on the big electronic scoreboard by the 18th green as the awards ceremony concluded there. PGA of America president Jim Richerson, in blue blazer and tie, squinted in the golden evening sunlight, flashed a big smile and shook his head.
“I don’t know if I’ll ever see something like this again,” Richerson said. “Even Justin, after he was off the microphone over there, said, ‘Seven back?’ He still couldn’t believe it. And, he’s the son of a PGA of America professional and the grandson of a PGA of America professional. We had a pretty good finish last year but this? This is unbelievable.”
At no point during most of the weekend did it appear the Wanamaker would be going home with Thomas for a second time in five years. With Chile’s surprising Mito Pereira? Maybe. Gritty Will Zalatoris? Possibly. Impressive Cameron Young or game Matt Fitzpatrick? Wouldn’t be surprised.
But Thomas? Surely not. He played the round of the week in high winds Friday morning, posting a 67, but then coughed up five bogeys in mild conditions during Saturday’s third round and faded out of the picture, putting himself seven strokes behind the unheralded Pereira and five shots out of second place.