You Oughta Know: JT the last player to beat Hideki


Justin Thomas leads Hideki Matusyama by two shots through 54 holes at the SBS Tournament of Champions. Here's what You Oughta Know heading into Sunday at Kapalua.

• Matsuyama has won four of his last five worldwide starts, taking the Japan Open, the WGC-HSBC Champions, the Taiheiyo Masters, and the Hero World Challenge. The only event he didn't win? The CIMB Classic. The only player to beat him? Justin Thomas.

• Thomas is in search of his third PGA Tour victory after winning the CIMB each of the last two years. This is his first outright 54-hole lead, after closing one of two previous 54-hole co-leads (lost 2015 CareerBuilder). This would be his first win in the United States.

• The hottest player on the planet, Matsuyama, over his last six events is a combined 106 under par. No one has won more in the last calendar year than Matsuyama, who will be the defending champion next month in Phoenix.

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• With a win Sunday, Matsuyama would be the first Japanese player in history to win four PGA Tour titles. He would also be the first Japanese player to win back-to-back Tour starts (WGC-HSBC Champions).

• Tied for third at 14 under par, Jimmy Walker is back in contention after a post-PGA swoon. He played his first six rounds of the 2016-17 season a combined 26 over par and failed to break 70 last fall.

• Walker has enjoyed plenty of prior success in Hawaii, where he's twice won the Sony Open and lost the 2015 TOC in a playoff to Reed.

• Some bad news for those in the chase pack who aren't Matsuyama: every winner of this event since 2006 has been within two shots of the lead entering the final round.

Information courtesy the Golf Channel Editorial Research Unit