photo courtesy TPC Southwind
The WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational heads to TPC Southwind in Memphis, TN this weekend, July 26-29. The tournament is the 3rd World Golf Championships event of the year, which are generally seen as the most important (and lucrative) events outside of the major championships. The tournament is a recognized events on both the PGA Tour and European Tour and will feature golf's top players. The first WGC-Invitationa invites a smaller field of around 70 golfers to compete each year, with no cut. The tournament has seen many notable former winners, including 8-time champion Tiger Woods, who is remarkably the only repeat winner of the event. Other former champions include hall of famer Vijay Singh, Dustin Johnson, Rory McIlroy and last year’s champion Justin Thomas.
2018 Champion Justin Thomas
The 2018 edition was the last held at Akron, OH after spending 19 of the previous 20 editions at Firestone Country Club. Justin Thomas started well and by the second round hehad a share of the lead. Thomas played even better in his third round and was the outright leader by 3 strokes entering into the final round of golf. With big names like Rory McIlroy and Jason Day chasing, most analysts predicted a close finishing day. Instead, Thomas played solid, if largely unspectacular, golf while his rivals effectively self-destructed. Thomas would win the tournament by 4 strokes after posting a score of 69 while McIlroy and Day finished the round with a pair of 73s. The win was Thomas’ first and only WGC title.
photo credit: Brian Spurlock/USA Today Sports
Justin Thomas faces a very difficult field as he seeks to defend his title. The tournament is made up primarily of members of last year’s Ryder Cup teams and the top 50 players from the Official World Golf Ranking. This year sees 45 of the top 50 players accept invitations with Dustin Johnson and Brooks Koepka among the leading contenders. Johnson has already won twice at TPC Southwind, including in last year’s FedEx St. Jude’s Classic. Rory McIlroy will want to get his game back on track after succumbing to pressure and getting cut from last week’s British Open. Other contenders in the stacked field are Tommy Fleetwood, Xander Schauffele and Justin Rose. With such an elite group of golfers, picking a favorite is nearly impossible, and fans should expect some of the season’s best golf this weekend.
Television coverage is provided by the Golf Channel and CBS. Coverage of the first 2 rounds of tournament are on the Golf Channel Thursday and Friday, 9am-7pm ET. Coverage on Saturday and Sunday begins on the Golf Channel from 12-1:45pm ET before switching to CBS from 2-6pm ET. Selected groups and holes are also available through the PGA Tour’s streaming service PGA Tour Live. Radio coverage is provided by PGA Tour Radio on SiriusXM and online at PGATour.com .