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#pounditThursday, July 7, 2022

Justin Thomas responds to LIV Golf rumors

Justin Thomas reads a putt

Jun 21, 2020; Hilton Head, South Carolina, USA; Justin Thomas lines up his putt on the 17th green during the final round of the RBC Heritage golf tournament at Harbour Town Golf Links. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Justin Thomas withdrew from this week’s Traveler’s Championship in Cromwell, Conn. on Wednesday, and quickly took to Twitter to quell any speculation as to why he did so.

The PGA Tour announced on social media that Thomas would not be in the field and would be replaced by Satoshi Kodaira. With numerous players leaving the PGA Tour for the Saudi-backed LIV Golf league, Thomas likely wanted to shut down any rumors about his withdrawal having something to do with him joining LIV.

On Wednesday, Thomas quote-tweeted the Tour’s announcement, saying that he would not be playing in order to rest his back.

“Before the rumors start flying, I have decided to WD to treat and rest my back which I tweaked earlier this week,” Thomas wrote. “Just making sure I get it taken care of and ready for the rest of the PGA season as planned. Hate to be missing one of the best/my favorite events @TravelersChamp!”

While Thomas has been outspoken in his support for the PGA Tour, it wouldd be hard to blame fans for speculating about his departure based on recent events.

Brooks Koepka joined LIV Golf Monday after being noticeably aggravated by questions from reporters about the league prior to last week’s U.S. Open. On Tuesday, the Tour announced that Koepka withdrew from the Traveler’s Championship in the exact same way as the Thomas announcement was made.

On Wednesday, Rory McIlroy criticized Koepka and other LIV defectors for going back on their initial support of the Tour.

While Thomas will not be playing, the field should still be strong with McIlroy, Jordan Spieth and Scottie Scheffler all in the mix.

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