Tiger Woods, playing with 11-year-old son Charlie, and Justin Thomas, playing with his father Mike, have committed to be first-time competitors at the unofficial PNC Championship at The Ritz-Carlton Golf Club Orlando, Grande Lakes, Dec. 17-20.
Now we know one reason why: A grudge match between Justin Thomas and Charlie Woods.
“For some reason, Charlie just always wants to beat me, it doesn’t matter what it is,” Thomas said from this week’s Mayakoba Golf Classic presented by Unifin. “Although he’s never beaten me in golf or a putting contest, he still talks trash just like his dad. It will be fun. We’ll have that like inner tournament within a tournament, trying to shut his little mouth up, but it will be fun.”
So passionate is Charlie’s desire to beat Justin, in fact, that he has requested they play together.
“Yeah, Tiger and I talked about it a bunch,” Thomas said. “He brought it up a while ago that Charlie wanted to play, and Charlie really wanted to play with us. I’ve obviously gotten to know him well, and he knows my dad a little bit as well.”
Woods has been teaching Charlie the game in South Florida, where Charlie has begun to make a name for himself on the junior golf scene. Tiger has spoken of playing the role his dad Earl played for him, devising ways to help Charlie sharpen his game. Jack Nicklaus said at the recent Masters that Tiger had boasted of putting Charlie in a set of blade irons, for example, because they are harder to hit and therefor improve hand-eye coordination.
“I can’t tell you how excited I am to be playing with Charlie in our first official tournament together,” Woods said recently. “It’s been great watching him progress as a junior golfer and it will be incredible playing as a team together in the PNC Championship.”
Added Thomas from Mayakoba: “My dad, it’s going to be very special for us. Probably won’t be near as competitive as Charlie will be, but it will be down in there somewhere. We’re just excited. It’s going to be fun.”
Source: PGA tour