If professional golf teaches us anything, we know it’s never too early to get on the road to stardom and it’s never too late to remain relevant.
Justin Thomas at age 23 won his second PGA Tour event, which happened to be the same one he won last year – the CIMB Classic in Malaysia. Big things have been expected from Thomas, who won six times as a collegian at the University of Alabama. He successfully defended his title at the CIMB but the downside is that it’s a limited-field event without most of the world’s stars in attendance.
But as the great Bobby Jones once said, you can only beat those who show up to be beaten and on the PGA Tour, a win is a win is a win. Still, it is hoped that Thomas will use his second victory as a springboard toward fulfilling his considerable promise on Tour. He was among those talked about as a captain’s pick for Davis Love III’s Ryder Cup team.
In Portugal, a Ryder Cup captain in the not-too-distant future showed he’s still got some game to compete against the whippersnappers. Pádraig Harrington, at 45 almost twice Thomas’ age, torched the Portugal Masters for a 23-under total and his 15th European Tour victory, his first since he won two of his three major championships in 2008. He did win the Honda Classic on the PGA Tour last year.
Harrington could be the European captain in 2018 or 2020 but until then, he will be trying to make the European side as a player.
As it’s often said, the ball doesn’t know how old you are.