Morikawa eager to savour taste of success after debut Open triumph
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Three of golf's biggest names have committed their involvement to the WGC FedEx St. Jude Invitational, as it was announced Rory McIlroy, Justin Thomas and Collin Morikawa will all tee it up at TPC Southwind.
The news comes just two days after world number one Jon Rahm withdrew from the competition following his involvement in the Tokyo 2020 Olympics golf, which comes to an end just five days before the World Golf Championship in Tennessee.
Despite this, the short turnaround does not seem to be an issue for McIlroy, Thomas and Morikawa as all three – like Rahm – will also be competing at the Olympic event in Japan next week.
There is no doubt that McIlroy will be more than looking forward to returning to PGA Tour action at TPC Southwind, after the four-time major winner seemed less than excited about the prospect of representing Ireland at the Olympic Games, following his final round in the Open Championship last week.
When asked about his thoughts on travelling out to Tokyo for the Games next week the 32-year-old said: " I don't know if there is much to look forward to [about the Olympics], It's obviously going to be a very different environment.
Justin Thomas and Rory McIlroy will join Colin Morikawa at TPC Southwind (Image: GETTY)
He added: "Look, I’m not a very patriotic guy. I’m doing it because I think it's the right thing to do. I missed it last time and for golf to be an Olympic sport you need your best players there and I feel like I want to represent the game of golf more than anything else."
St. Jude Invitational tournament officials were given a huge boost with the commitment of Thomas, as the American heads into the Tennessee event as defending champion.
The 28-year-old from Kentucky picked up his second World Golf Championship crown at last year's tournament, after shooting 13-under-par across his four rounds to clinch the title by three shots ahead of fellow Americans, Brooks Koepka, Daniel Berger and Phil Mickelson and Englishman, Tom Lewis.
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Justin Thomas heads to the event as defending champion. (Image: GETTY)
Morikawa then completes the star-studded lineup fresh off the back of his record-breaking Open Championship win at Royal St. George's last Sunday.
The 24-year-old overcame Louis Oosthuizen's 54-hole lead to clinch the Claret Jug by two shots, ahead of second place Jordan Spieth to become the first golfer to win two major championships on debut after his 2020 PGA Championship win.
Whilst McIlroy, Thomas and Morikawa all competed in last week's Open and entered both the Olympic Games and St Jude Invitational, the trio will get some rest bite away from competitive golf this week as all three players have decided not to take part in this week's 3M Open in Minnesota.
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