PONTE VEDRA BEACH in Fla. Tiger WoodsPlayers Championship this week is missing more than one familiar face.
Champion of defense Cameron SmithIndias runner-up was won by a stroke by a player named, who had eight one putts in the last nine holes. Anirban LahiriLast year, he was unable to defend the victory that was the most significant of his career at TPC Sawgrass.
Smith won the so-called fifth Major four months later when he won the 150th Open Championship at St. Andrews. Smith signed a multiyear contract to the LIV Golf circuit, which is financed through Saudi Arabias Public Investment Fund, just one month after the PGA Tours season-ending Tour Championship.
Wouldnt it be better if this weeks defending champion was here? Absolutely, she said. Rory McIlroyHe was the winner of the Players in 2019. But he made a choice that he felt was right for him and he knew that this decision was going with consequences. One consequence is not being able play on the PGA Tour right now.
Smith isn’t the only top finisher of a year ago who isn’t in this week’s field. Lahiri, Englands Paul CaseyThey finished third in 2022 and are now playing in LIV Golf League. Harold Varner III Dustin JohnsonThe top 10 finalists were crowned by.
Even without LIV Golf players there are 44 of the top 50 players on the Official World Golf Ranking, and 29 of 30 on the FedEx Cup Points List.
No. 1 golfer in the world 1 golfer Jon RahmRahm stated that he has always believed that the defending champion should get a spot in the next tournament. Rahm believes Smith is in a different situation.
Rahm stated, Were discussing different circumstances right now. Some players chose to go to a different league knowing they wouldnt be allowed to play here. Yes, this is a major event. Although it is not a major, it is still a PGA Tour event. In that regard, I think its not right for him to be here.
Smith, a man from Australia, has moved to Ponte Vedra Beach (where the PGA Tours headquarters is), making matters worse. Smith practiced at TPC Sawgrass.
Jay Monahan, PGA Tour commissioner, stated that Cam Smith had a great 2022 performance. He was a worthy champion. As I look back at this week and see the strength of the field, I believe that Sunday night will bring us another worthy champion.
It is awkward, to answer your question directly. But, it was his decision. And we have an amazing field here this week. There is a history and a tradition that every one of these 144 will seek to acquire.