Thomas hopes to shake off rust on Canadian debut

American Justin Thomas will make his Canadian debut when he tees it up this Thursday during the Canadian Open at the Hamilton Golf and Country Club (AFP pic)

LOS ANGELES: Justin Thomas is usually bidding to make a big splash when he plays a new tournament, but he’ll be happy just to make the cut in his Canadian Open debut this week.

“Playing four days would be a good start, as opposed to just two,” said Thomas, who failed to make it to the weekend at the Memorial Tournament last week.

Thomas says he is still trying to shake off the rust from a six-week layoff between the Memorial and finishing tied 12th at The Masters in April.

“It was weird, because I really felt pretty good about my game last week,” he said. “I was really rusty and was making some stupid mistakes that I don’t usually do.

“So I was just trying to play my way out of that. The more time you can get in competition, I feel like the quicker I’ll get out of the rust.”

World number six Thomas faces a strong field in this week’s tournament, which is the final tune-up before the US Open, including three of the world’s top four in the shape of Brooks Koepka, Dustin Johnson and Rory McIlroy.

“My first-ever time to Canada, so I’m excited to be here,” Thomas said. “You know, it was obviously a late add. It wasn’t exactly in the plans, but I definitely need to get more reps just going into the Open.

“I heard a lot of great things about the course,” he added of the Hamilton Golf and Country Club outside of Toronto.

The 26-year-old is seeking his first win in 2019 with his best performance being a runner-up finish at the Genesis Open in February.

“I am trying to get more competitive rounds in, and just more tournament conditions,” he said.

Thomas attended his first NBA finals game when he saw the Toronto Raptors and Golden State Warriors battle on Sunday.

“Being from Louisville, we don’t have any professional team, so it’s not like my allegiance is necessarily with one team,” he said.

“My day isn’t made or ruined either way. I have never been to an NBA finals game before, so when the opportunity presented itself, it was pretty fun to get to go.”