rainn.png
Tuesday September 21st, 2021 1:39AM

Thomas to go on training program after anti-gay slur

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

Justin Thomas intends to go through an individual training program to “become a better person” after he was picked up uttering a homophobic slur under his breath when he missed a putt at a tournament in Hawaii this month.

Clothing brand Ralph Lauren ended its long-time sponsorship with Thomas following the incident two weeks ago, which the No. 3-ranked American golfer described as “humiliating and embarrassing and it’s not me.”

Thomas has spoken to his other sponsors — Titleist, FootJoy and global bank Citi are among those listed on his official website — and hopes they will stand by him as he looks to educate himself and restore his reputation.

“It’s not a word I use,” Thomas said Wednesday, referring to the slur he blurted out when missing a 5-foot par putt on the fourth hole of Sentry Tournament of Champions, “but for some reason it was in there and that’s what I’m trying to figure out — why it was in there.

“And like I said, it’s going to be part of this process and training program, whatever I need to do, not only to prove to myself but to prove to my sponsors and prove to the people who don’t know who I am that that is indeed not the person I am.”

Ralph Lauren, which has sponsored Thomas since he turned pro, said it was “disheartened” by his language and made its decision to end its association with the player because of the responsibility it has to its stakeholders.

Speaking from the Abu Dhabi Championship, where he will be playing this week in a rare appearance on the European Tour, Thomas said he was upset but respected Ralph Lauren’s decision.

“I spoke with them, along with all my sponsors, and although I apologized, just like it was then it’s an opportunity for me to grow and I felt like it was something we could have done together and gone through that process,” he said. “They just felt like they needed to move on so that’s exactly what I’m doing as well.

“I wasn’t disappointed,” Thomas added, “because I put them in a terrible position. I was just more upset. I had a great relationship with a lot of people there and like I said we had the opportunity to do it all together.”

Pushed on the training program he intends to follow, Thomas said he would be keeping it “at a personal level.”

“Obviously people are going to be a part of that process,” he said. “But what I’m doing I’d like to keep internally and just go through the appropriate steps to get where I need to be and want to be, so people understand that’s not the person I am, the character I like to portray.”

The Abu Dhabi Championship starts Thursday and is Thomas’ first event since the incident in Kapalua. He will be playing in the tournament for the first time in what will be only his fourth start in a regular European Tour event.

Rory McIlroy will play in the same group as Thomas for the first two rounds at Abu Dhabi Golf Club, and does not expect the issue to affect the American's game

“He maybe won’t be as ignorant to offend people — obviously what he said was offensive to a large portion of the population,” McIlroy said. "He’ll be better for it, he’ll learn, he’ll move on and he’ll be just as good a golfer as he’s always been.

“And, if anything, it’ll make him a better person than he already is, which is hard because he is already a great guy.”

___

More AP sports: https://apnews.com/apf-sports and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

___

Steve Douglas is at https://twitter.com/sdouglas80

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP Sports, AP Online Golf, AP Sports - PGA
© Copyright 2021 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Trump's exit: President leaves office with legacy of chaos
Donald Trump will walk out of the White House and board Marine One for the last time as president Wednesday morning, leaving behind a legacy of chaos and tumult and a nation bitterly divided
6:38AM ( 13 minutes ago )
Thomas to go on training program after anti-gay slur
Justin Thomas says he intends to go through an individual training program to “become a better person” after he was picked up uttering a homophobic slur under his breath when he missed a putt at a tournament in Hawaii this month
6:14AM ( 37 minutes ago )
Asia Today: China records new cases, defends response
China’s capital, Beijing, recorded seven more coronavirus cases amid a lingering outbreak in the country’s north
6:13AM ( 38 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Woods has 5th back surgery, to miss Torrey Pines and Riviera
Tiger Woods has undergone a fifth back surgery that has put the start to his new year on hold
4:59AM ( 1 hour ago )
3 title game quarterbacks have similar draft history
Aaron Rodgers, Patrick Mahomes and Josh Allen have something in common besides being three of the four starting quarterbacks remaining in the NFL playoffs
3:39AM ( 3 hours ago )
Super Host? Bucs can become 1st to play Super Bowl at home
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have a chance to make history at Green Bay on Sunday
3:27AM ( 3 hours ago )
AP Sports
Kevin Na has a big finish and wins the Sony Open
Kevin Na had to rally to win the Sony Open
2:19AM ( 2 days ago )
Steele takes lead with 61 to get another chance in Sony Open
Brendan Steele didn't have to wait long for a chance to redeem himself in the Sony Open
11:19PM ( 3 days ago )
Nick Taylor gets a break and a birdie and leads Sony Open
Nick Taylor was 1 over through five holes
11:43PM ( 4 days ago )
AP Online Golf
Trump business backlash part of 'cancel culture,' son says
Hits to President Donald Trump’s business empire since the deadly riots at the U_S_ Capitol are part of a liberal “cancel culture."
2:42PM ( 6 days ago )
Another tournament in Hawaii, a fresh start for most players
Collin Morikawa is among 31 players who are spending a second straight week in Hawaii
3:02AM ( 1 week ago )
Masters plans for a limited number of spectators in April
Augusta National plans to have cheers, but maybe not roars at the Masters in April
6:06PM ( 1 week ago )
AP Sports - PGA
Trump's exit: President leaves office with legacy of chaos
Donald Trump will walk out of the White House and board Marine One for the last time as president Wednesday morning, leaving behind a legacy of chaos and tumult and a nation bitterly divided
6:38AM ( 13 minutes ago )
Asia Today: China records new cases, defends response
China’s capital, Beijing, recorded seven more coronavirus cases amid a lingering outbreak in the country’s north
6:13AM ( 38 minutes ago )
Facing crush of crises, Biden will take helm as president
Joe Biden swears the oath of office at noon Wednesday to become the 46th president of the United States
6:05AM ( 46 minutes ago )
Indian village cheers for Harris before swearing-in as US VP
People in a tiny Indian village surrounded by rice paddies have flocked to a Hindu temple, burst crackers and uttered prayers hours before its descendant, Kamala Harris, takes her oath of office to become the U.S. vice president
5:58AM ( 54 minutes ago )
Music stars slam UK's 'shameful' failure on EU touring rules
Dozens of U.K. music stars including Elton John, Ed Sheeran and conductor Simon Rattle say musicians have been “shamefully failed” by the British government, which has left them facing post-Brexit restrictions on touring in the European Union
5:52AM ( 59 minutes ago )