Published On: Sun, Mar 17th, 2024

Brooks Koepka’s LIV Golf team cannot resist brutal Justin Thomas dig | Golf | Sport

Brooks Koepka’s LIV Golf team Smash GC took a cheeky swipe at PGA Tour star Justin Thomas after he failed to make the cut at the Players Championship this week.

The two-time PGA Championship winner had made a sly comment about Talor Gooch, a member of Koepka’s team, before the tournament at TPC Sawgrass. It comes after Gooch claimed that if Rory McIlroy won the Masters it wouldn’t be quite the same because of the glaring absence of LIV Golf players.

Before the Players Championship, known affectionately as the ‘fifth major’ of golf, Thomas was asked about top players like Jon Rahm and Dustin Johnson not being there. The American defended the event, saying: “I mean, it’s still been the best field in golf for many previous years. Yeah, you could always make an argument that there’s other tournaments that are or are not.

“The PGA Championship has been the deepest field in terms of the most top 100 players, and I’m not just saying that for selfish reasons, it’s just the truth.”

Thomas then joked about Gooch’s ‘asterisk’ remark, finishing with: “I know what you mean in terms of how World Ranking and guys that are or aren’t on the Tour anymore.

“But that’s just kind of the reality that – and what they have put themselves in, and, yeah, I mean, I’m not going to have an asterisk next to my name for winning this because the field wasn’t too good, right.”

Of course, Thomas had no need to worry about an asterisk victory after enduring a tough week. A frustrating two-over-par 74 in Friday’s second round saw the 2021 champion finish one-over for the tournament and subsequently miss the cut by two shots.

On the back of Thomas’ misfortune, Koepka and Gooch’s Smash setup could not resist but take a dig. Taking to X, the official Smash GC account replied to a tweet containing Thomas’ quotes from earlier in the week, adding a cutting scissors emoji accompanied with an asterisk.

Gooch himself is one of a number of LIV stars absent from this year’s Masters despite an impressive 2023. The American won three times on the LIV setup last campaign before going on to be crowned the season-long champion.

Sadly for Gooch though, due to LIV’s lack of world-ranking recognition, he has drifted a long way off major qualification and will therefore miss all four flagship events, including next month’s trip to Augusta National.

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