Justin Thomas has hit back at the USGA, after the organisation spectacularly called him out on social media.
Responding to a series of tweets from former world No.1 Thomas about his issues with some of golf’s new rules, the USGA issued an extraordinary public reply.
Justin, we need to talk. You’ve cancelled every meeting we’ve planned with you, but we are reaching out again. We were at the first 5 events, and tournaments last year, and your tour has had a seat at the table for 7 years. We’d love nothing more than to give you a seat. Call us.— USGA PR (@USGA_PR) March 2, 2019
Thomas didn’t respond publicly but, in a follow-up tweet some time later, the USGA account appeared to suggest that there had been some subsequent dialogue between the two parties.
Justin, thanks for connecting with us offline. We look forward to meeting with you and talking through these issues. It's clear we both want to do what's right by the game.— USGA PR (@USGA_PR) March 3, 2019
Case closed? Not quite.
Speaking after the final round of the Honda Classic, where he finished in a tie for 30th, Thomas took the USGA to task over what he called ‘inaccurate’ information in their original tweet.
“It really hurt me,” said the 25-year-old. “It was upsetting to me because the information they put out there was inaccurate in terms of me cancelling meetings, and that doesn't make me look good, and that's just when I got a little upset.
“We had talked, some communication with them, because I know those guys. I've talked to them about the rules this year. We've all tried to communicate and tried to get better relationships with them. It's just, it is what it is, and all we're looking is to better the sport and better the game.”
For what it's worth, Thomas' fellow players are on his side. Jim Furyk, who captained Thomas during last year's Ryder Cup in Paris, is amongst them.
@jimfuryk on USGA tweet to @JustinThomas34: "They’ve said they want a better relationship [w/ players], but that tweet sure doesn’t help things from last night. When I went to breakfast this morning, that was what all everyone was talking about & it wasn’t really positive.” https://t.co/0Ri38dKGF4— Randall Mell (@RandallMellGC) March 3, 2019
Over to you, USGA…