Justin Thomas leads four qualifiers for U.S. men’s Olympic team

Jun 20, 2021; San Diego, California, USA; Justin Thomas reacts to his shot from the second tee during the final round of the U.S. Open golf tournament at Torrey Pines Golf Course. Mandatory Credit: Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports

PGA Tour pros Justin Thomas, Collin Morikawa, Xander Schauffele and Bryson DeChambeau have been chosen to represent the United States in the golf competition at the Tokyo Olympics next month.

The players were selected based on points accumulated at tournaments from July 2018 through Sunday, which was the final round of the U.S. Open. World No. 2 Dustin Johnson would have been in the top four, but he already said he did not plan to take part in the Olympics.

Each of the Americans must accept the invitation to Tokyo to become an official members of the team. Should any of them pull out, Patrick Cantlay is next in line for Team USA.

Don’t expect Morikawa to reject the invite.

“I’m going. I’m so excited,” Morikawa, 24, said. “It’s going to be one of the best things of my life. To think back that I was an amateur two years ago, literally two years ago, and to be on this team and to be heading to Tokyo puts a smile on my face.”

He is now ranked No. 4 in the world, trailing Thomas and ahead of Schauffele and DeChambeau. Cantlay is No. 7.

Also qualifying for the Olympics were newly minted U.S. Open champion and World No. 1 Jon Rahm of Spain, Rory McIlroy of Ireland, Tyrrell Hatton and Paul Casey of Great Britain, Viktor Hovland of Norway and Hideki Matsuyama of Japan.

None of the three medalists from the 2016 Rio Games qualified for Toyko — gold medalist Justin Rose of Great Britain, silver medalist Henrik Stenson of Sweden or bronze medalist Matt Kuchar.

In addition to Kuchar, the Americans who participated in Rio de Janeiro were Bubba Watson, Patrick Reed and Rickie Fowler.

In all, 60 golfers will play in the men’s competition from July 29-Aug. 1 at the East Course of the Kasumigaseki Country Club, a private club in Saitama about 40 miles northwest of Tokyo.

–Field Level Media