If you were disappointed by the performance of Kansas, Arizona or Marquette in the Final Four, and are not interested in the NCAA men’s basketball championship, the PGA Tour offers a second bracket.
From Wednesday through Sunday, the final World Golf Championships-Dell Technologies Match Play will be played at Austin Country Club. The bracket includes 64 players from 16 teams of four who will compete in round-robin groups. Each player will receive one point for winning a match, and a half-point if they tie. The winner of each group will be invited to knockout matches on Saturday and/or Sunday.
The PGA Tour will transition to a designated-event format in 2024. This week will be the last match-play event that will be part the regular season. It’s likely the last time that a tournament will bear the World Golf Championship title. Since 1999, the no-cut, limited-field events have been in existence.
Jay Monahan, PGA Tour commissioner, confirmed at the Players that a match play event would not be on the 2024 calendar. Instead, a tournament in Houston will replace it. Due to COVID-19 travel restrictions, the WGC-HSBC Champions in China were canceled each year for three years. Monahan stated, “It’s hard to predict when we would play.”
Defending champion Scottie SchefflerThe event was a favorite of Texan player, whose family is from Dallas.
Scheffler said Tuesday that match play is his favorite sport. I like the simplicity of it. You just need to go out and beat the guy in front of your. If you don’t win, you lose. If you beat him, then you win. This is why I love the simplicity of it.
The match play field comprises 27 of 30 top FedEx Cup players and 42 players from the Official World Golf Ranking. Scheffler, Jon Rahm, Rory McIlroy, Patrick Cantlay, Max HomaAnd Xander Schauffeleare among the best seeds.
Scheffler will need to overcome. Tom Kim, Alex NorenAnd Davis Rileyto move on to single elimination Rahm’s group includes Billy Horschel, who defeated Scheffler 2 & 1 in the championship match to win in 2021, Keith MitchellAnd Rickie Fowler.
Fowler stated, “I would love to see a match-play tournament at some point.” It’s a different style of play than what we usually do. We wouldn’t want it every week because it’s so volatile and it’s often not the guy who’s playing their best that week. You can hit someone who is hot for that day and knock them out. But match play is what I love. It would be a great idea to have match play on the Tour.
Here are some other things to watch this week in professional men’s golf:
McIlroy changing his equipment
McIlroy’s start in 2023 has been mediocre, aside from a tie for second at Arnold Palmer Invitational. McIlroy said that his role in the reshaping of the tour had taken a toll on the game, having missed the cut at Players his last start. McIlroy has been the face of PGA Tour, but he says he’d love to return to golf.
The PGA Tour had planned to limit his media presence in Austin this week.
McIlroy also suggested some equipment changes. McIlroy was unhappy with the way he was hitting the TaylorMade driver, and his putting was not up to par.
A putter change @McIlroyRoryThe @DellMatchPlay. He uses a @ScottyCameronHe uses a Newport putter, which is a copy of the putter he used in his first two majors. Rory said it allows him to be more athletic, and gives him more freedom. Rory also said it’s great. @TheMasters. pic.twitter.com/DoEGeO4DtT
— Todd Lewis (@ToddLewisGC) March 21, 2023
McIlroy is ranked No. McIlroy, who is ranked No.3 in the world, needed 60 puts in two rounds at Players and lost over 3 strokes to the field. He was the fastest driver at 305.2 miles, but was tied for 117th for driving accuracy, having only hit 13 of the 28 fairways at Stadium Course. He is 173rd on the tour in strokes achieved: putting (-.429).
On Tuesday, the Golf Channel reported that McIlroy is keeping the same driver, but has cut the shaft from 44 ½ inches to 44. He was also using a Scotty Cameron Newport putter to practice, a replica that he used to win the first two majors.
Fowler’s Masters push
Fowler is now No. Fowler is now at No. 59 in the OWGR. This is his highest ranking position since January 2021, when he was 56th. Fowler still has two chances of winning to earn a Masters invitation. He will be playing at the Valero Texas open at TPC San Antonio next Wednesday as well. However, he might reconsider his start if he does well in Austin.
The Masters will be open to the top 50 OWRG players after this week. Nosferatu on Twitter, a guru in OWGR, says Fowler must reach Austin’s quarterfinals to be eligible to break into the top 50. He would need to survive group play and win one more match.
Top 50 #OWGRProjections #TheMasters qualification. As you can see, all the hopefuls (in blue, not yet qualified to the Masters) are at the @DellMatchPlay, must get out of the group and all but one will need make it to the QF stage. pic.twitter.com/EBTZkv7i72
— Nosferatu (@VC606) March 20, 2023
Fowler is participating in the WGC – Dell Technologies Match Play for his first time since finishing 38th last year.
Fowler stated, “I knew that I had to come here and play well.” “I wasn’t certain of what I should do. With the type of world ranking, anything that puts points onto the board will only help me move up. My short-term goal, however, is to get back in Augusta. If that doesn’t happen we’ll keep moving forward and being in a good spot.
Other players who aren’t in the top 50 and don’t have Masters invitations, but are playing in Austin, include Lucas Herbert(must not reach the round 16). Taylor Montgomery (quarterfinals), Denny McCarthy (quarterfinals), Victor Perez (semifinals), Adam Hadwin(semifinals), Davis Riley Nick Taylor (semifinals).
Scheffler’s scouting journey
Scheffler celebrated the Players victory with a scouting trip at Augusta National Golf Club. There, he will attempt to defend his Masters title April 6-9. Scheffler practiced with his father Scott and swing coach Randy Smith.
Scheffler stated Tuesday that “when we went to Augusta last Week, that was really the first time where winning the Masters felt real.” “Because it was our property return, I’d just won at the Players, so we just wanted to celebrate by going to Augusta. It was really the first time that it felt real that the Masters had been won for me.
Scheffler has been repeatedly asked to host the Champions Dinner on Tuesday night during Masters week. The guests include former Masters champions Phil Mickelson, Dustin Johnson, Patrick Reed, Sergio Garcia, Bubba WatsonAnd Charl SchwartzelThey are currently playing in the LIV Golf League.
Scheffler stated, “When it comes Tuesday night and being there at that dinner and talking with everyone else who has won that tournament previously, it will be pretty special.” “It will definitely make me feel emotional. I will try to hold back the tears. It will be a great experience. It’s a great place to be a part of one of the greatest fraternities in golf.
Garcia expressed his excitement about attending the Tucson, Arizona LIV Golf League event last week.
Garcia stated that Garcia would have to ask anyone who feels awkward. “I’m going be fine. I don’t have problems with anyone, so I try not make too much of it. I’m going there because I earned it, I deserve it, I’m going enjoy it. I hope the other guys do the exact same.”
Road to the Masters
Augusta National Golf Club will host a Road to the Masters Invitational to commemorate the release EA Sports PGA Tour Road to the Masters videogame. It will take place on April 2, the day before practice rounds begin.
A tournament will be played at Augusta National’s media centre. It will be streamed live online on Masters.com as well as several social media platforms, from 6 p.m. until 8 p.m. ET. ET will air on ESPN2 at 7:05 p.m. ET on ESPN2.
A Masters Sunday unlike any other. #RoadToTheMasters
🔴Live from Augusta National Golf Club
🕕Sunday, April 2, 2016, 6:00 PM EDT
🌐 https://t.co/VlktfYOZUc, @TheMasters, @EASPORTSPGATOUR & @ESPNPlus pic.twitter.com/5RvXXEEP21
— The Masters (@TheMasters) March 20, 2023
ESPN’s Michael CollinsMarty Smith and Marty Smith are among the analysts. The game will be accessible worldwide on April 7.
Shaq is among the new TGL investors
NBA legends Shaquille, Dwayne Wade, Kevin Durant and Shaquille O’Neal are just some of the latest celebrities to invest with TMRW Sports. Tiger WoodsRory McIlroy and CEO Mike McCarley. They join other NBA stars like Rory McIlroy, CEO Mike McCarley. Stephen CurryAccording to TMRW Sports’ announcement on Tuesday, Jayson Tatum, Chris Paul and Jayson Paul are now listed as investors.
TMRW Sports’ initial project, the tech-infused TGL league golf league, is expected to start play in 2024. The matches will take place in prime time on Monday nights. TGL broke ground last month on an arena on Palm Beach State College’s campus in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. There will be 15 matches as well as semifinals and a finale.