Justin Thomas Defends Hero World Challenge Ranking Points

Commenting on Twitter, Thomas gave his thoughts on the new OWGR system and how its points are awarded

Thomas hits a drive
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Back in August, a new Official World Golf Ranking System came into place (opens in new tab), with each player in the field contributing performance points, which are partially determined by that player’s Strokes Gained World Rating. The world rating is then calculated on round-by-round over a rolling two-year basis, taking into account the relative difficulty of every round. The total field rating is the sum of the performance points and is equal to the total ranking points to be distributed at the end of the tournament.

It's safe to say not many players are fans of this new system, with the likes of Tiger Woods (opens in new tab) and Jon Rahm (opens in new tab) calling it "laughable" and "flawed". Now, another player has waded into the argument, with Justin Thomas taking to Twitter to give his opinion on the matter, specifically around the awarding of points at the Hero World Challenge. (opens in new tab)

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In a tweet posted by @flushingitgolf, it read: "Spieth’s last again at the Hero and will get 2.0886 OWGR points for his effort. Players need to come 3rd in the Indonesian Masters this week to get that many. The new system is going to crush the chances of “international” players getting into majors and it’s completely unfair."

In response, Thomas gave a straight up answer, with the two-time Major winner stating: "An event with 15ish (sorry not sure the exact number) of the top 20 in the world? It’s all about the quality of the field. The new system is hurting events like this more than it does that. Like anything in golf, play well enough in big events and you’ll be rewarded."

The debate didn't stop there though, as Flushing It responded to Thomas' tweet, as the account commented: "Play well enough by just turning up and coming last? International tours are going to get crucified and there’s going to be no opportunity for these players unless they move to the States. Tom Kim would still be grinding on the Asian Tour now with the new system. Is that right?"

Justin Thomas plays a tee shot during the 2022 FedEx St. Jude Championship

Thomas currently sits eighth in the World Rankings

(Image credit: Getty Images)

There have been plenty of examples of the OWGR affecting tournaments (opens in new tab). At the DP World Tour Championship, multiple players inside the World's top 25 featured, but the winner, Rahm, only received 21.8 points, whereas last year it was around 46. What's more, across the pond at the RSM Classic (opens in new tab), no players were in the World's top 25, but the winner received around 37 points, some 15 points more.

Another example comes from PGA Tour of Australasia pro, David Micheluzzi, who questioned why he received over twice as many points in the Australian PGA Championship (opens in new tab) at the start of the year than in the same tournament last week.

With the Hero World Challenge being an invite-only event, it does feature some of the biggest names you will see outside the Major Championships. Adding to that, Thomas' closing remark to the thread said: "You’ve earned your right if you’re in this field, that’s just a fact. Anybody is open to going to q school to qualify for Korn ferry and try and get their cards just as I and others did. Tom made the most of his exemptions, so I agree to disagree there."

Looking for the perfect gift for the festive season? Check out the best Christmas Golf Gift Ideas (opens in new tab).

Matt Cradock
Staff Writer

Matt joined Golf Monthly in February 2021 covering weekend news, before also transitioning to equipment and testing. After freelancing for Golf Monthly and The PGA for 18 months, he was offered a full-time position at the company in October 2022 and continues to cover weekend news and social media, as well as help look after Golf Monthly’s many buyers’ guides and equipment reviews.


Taking up the game when he was just seven years of age, Matt made it into his county squad just a year later and continues to play the game at a high standard, with a handicap of around 2-4. To date, his best round came in 2016, where he shot a six-under-par 66 having been seven-under through nine holes. He currently plays at Witney Lakes in Oxfordshire and his favourite player is Rory McIlroy, despite nearly being struck by his second shot at the 17th during the 2015 BMW PGA Championship.


Matt’s current What’s In The Bag?

Driver: Honma TW747, 8.75°

Fairway Wood: TaylorMade Rocketballz Stage 2, 15°, 19°

Hybrid: Adams Super Hybrid, 22°

Irons: Mizuno MP54, 5-PW

Wedges: Cleveland 588 RTX 2.0 Tour Satin, 50°, 56°, 60°

Putter: Cleveland TFI 2135 Satin Cero

Ball: Titleist Pro V1x