Junior Presidents Cup The Gulf Club

Watch Rayhan Thomas make a clutch birdie to earn historic half at Jnr Presidents Cup

Happiness is earning your first half Presidents Cup point. Rayhan Thomas shares the moment with his entourage including a hug for his father John.

By Kent Gray
Rayhan Thomas has produced a clutch birdie on the final hole at Plainfield Country Club to secure a crucial half point for Trevor Immelman’s International team on the opening morning of the inaugural Junior Presidents Cup in New Jersey.

The Dubai star teamed with South African Garrick Higgo to fight back from three down with seven to play to halve with U.S. No.1 Noah Goodwin and fellow Texan Cole Hammer in the first fourball match out.

Here’s the nerveless birdie putt Thomas holed to ensure an unbeaten start to the biggest event of his young golfing career:

After both teams produced four-under 68s on the picturesque 7110 yard course in Edison, NJ, Thomas faced a local TV reporter. The 17-year-old Dubai-born, Indian No.1 handled the occasion with trademark calm:

“Yeah it’s pretty awesome. It would have been nice had we got a point but half a point is good enough and hopefully we can do well this afternoon,” said the correspondence schooled Dubai Creek member, ranked 31st in the latest World Amateur Golf Rankings (WAGR).

The Mena Tour trailblazer played a pivotal role in the comeback, a birdie on the 588 yard 12th getting the International team back to two down before both he and Higgo birdied the 14th for another gain. Higgo then got the match back to all square with another birdie on 17 before Immelman’s lead-out men held their nerve down the last.

The half point shapes as crucial with David Toms’ U.S. taking a 5-1 lead into Monday afternoon’s foursomes. Thomas and his International team-mates will certainly need a big afternoon and a dominant performance in Tuesday’s 12 singles matches if they are to topple the hosts.

Immelman again paired Thomas and Higgo for the foursomes against Goodwin and South Carolina’s Trent Phillips.

 

Kent Gray

Kent Gray

Editor of Golf Digest Middle East. Has written about golf since 1989 and owned a suspect short game even longer.

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