Justin Thomas confident of capitalising on Kapalua lead


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Justin Thomas believes there is more to come from him on Sunday after surging clear at the SBS Tournament of Champions.

The 23-year-old headed into the weekend in a tie for the lead alongside Ryan Moore but soon struck out on his own, carding five birdies, an eagle and just a single bogey on his way to a six-under par third round of 67.

That was enough to take him to 18-under overall and allow him to establish a two-shot lead at Kapalua.

World number six Hideki Matsuyama is his closest rival after he shot a joint best of the day 66, while the trio of Moore, Walker and William McGirt are tied for third, four off the lead.

This week’s event only features those players who won tournaments in 2016 and the limited field presents the perfect opportunity to get the New Year off to a winning start.

Thomas is the 1.95 favourite to triumph in Hawaii, with Matsuyama next best at 2.75, and is feeling confident heading into Sunday.

The Louisville-native believes he could have gone even lower in his third round and is now focused on making his two-stroke advantage pay by making the perfect start to 2017.

“I am not disappointed but I left a lot out there,” Thomas said. “That is always a good thing because I can just go work on it and improve.

“I am just looking for a chance to win. That is why we enter each tournament, or at least why I do.

It is nice to be able to put yourself in an opportunity in the first event of the year.”

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