Patience key for US PGA victor Thomas

Updated: 

Justin Thomas pointed to lessons learned from his challenge at the U.S. Open after securing his first major title with victory in the US PGA Championship.

Thomas made headlines at Erin Hills in June with a nine-under 63 in round three, but ultimately finished in a tie for ninth - eight shots behind winner Brooks Koepka - following a final-round 75.

It was an altogether different story at Quail Hollow on Sunday as Thomas proved the class of the field, the 24-year-old American pulling clear of his rivals on the back nine to triumph by two strokes on eight under.

At the presentation of the Wanamaker Trophy, Thomas was asked what proved key to his success.

"Just patience," he replied. "At the U.S. Open, although Brooks had an unbelievable round, I didn't feel like I had my best stuff that day. I still learned that I needed to be a little bit more patient to have a better finish.

"Obviously you play to win and I had a great opportunity to win today, but I just knew that no matter where my game was at, I just needed to be patient. I felt like I had the game to get it done, it was just a matter of if I did it or not."

Close friends Jordan Spieth - who came up short in his bid to complete a career Grand Slam this week - and Rickie Fowler were among the first to congratulate Thomas beside the 18th green.

"All the guys that stuck around ... I mean, Bud Cauley, he finished before I even started, so for him to stick around and all the guys to be here, it's a cool thing we have going on right now with the young golfers," Thomas added.

"We're all rooting for each other and if we can't play well, we want the others to play well. Obviously it was great to win, but I feel like it's part of a little group now."