Thomas, a former world No. 1, praised the rising accomplishments of this youthful set regardless that the competitors has helped push his present world rating to seventh.
“I’ve performed some fairly rattling good golf, however should you’re not successful tournaments now, you’re getting lapped,” Thomas stated. “That’s simply the best way it’s, which simply goes to indicate the extent of golf being performed.
“However the jealous facet of me needs that to be me.”
It’s a cheap expectation that youth will proceed to have an effect heading into the 4 golf majors contested from April via July. Whereas the truism is that have issues tremendously on the Masters, additionally it is price remembering that Will Zalatoris, 25, completed second finally 12 months’s Masters. Xander Schauffele, 28 and ranked ninth (one behind McIlroy), performed within the ultimate group on the final day of that Masters with eventual winner Hideki Matsuyama.
At this 12 months’s U.S. Open, Rahm, 27, is the defending champion. Scheffler, Schauffele and Morikawa had been all within the prime 10 final 12 months, as had been Daniel Berger, 28, and Guido Migliozzi of Italy, who’s, after all, simply 25. Ultimately 12 months’s P.G.A. Championship, Scheffler, Zalatoris and Morikawa had been among the many prime 10 finishers; Morikawa is the reigning British Open champion. Oh, sure, at that occasion a 12 months in the past, Spieth was second and Rahm was third.
There are a handful of theories to elucidate this youthful surge, and most middle on the heightened professionalism that has develop into commonplace even in competitions for prime golfers of their late teenagers or early 20s. That has in flip raised the caliber of golf on the American collegiate degree, the place rosters are additionally now regularly dotted with elite gamers from world wide.
And since each dialog about fashionable golf should have a tie to Woods, there’s additionally a perception that extra agile and finely honed athletes have been flocking to golf for greater than 20 years — a tribute to Woods’s impact on sports activities worldwide.
Put all of it collectively and people graduating from professional golf’s chief minor league, the Korn Ferry Tour, appear much less intimidated by the massive leagues and extra able to win, or not less than contend, instantly.