The PGA tour wrap around season continues with a 3-week swing through Asia. The CIMB Classic this week, the CJ Cup in South Korea next week, and finally the World Golf Championship HSBC Champions in China.
This week’s CIMB Classic, which began in 2010 as a small-field event for just 40 players, has been an official tournament on the schedule since the PGA Tour went to a wraparound season in 2013-14 and now has a field of 78 players. Justin Thomas is the two-time defending champion of the Malaysian event.
Next week the tour heads to its first-ever event in South Korea, the CJ Cup at Nine Bridges. Like the tournament in Malaysia, the CJ Cup will have a 78-player field, with 60 coming off the final FedEx Cup points list from last season. Each tournament will also feature players from the host country.
After the event in South Korea, the tour moves to Shanghai for the WGC HSBC Champions. The tournament has been on the schedule since 2005 and is co-sanctioned by the European Tour. It became a WGC in 2009, and it was recognized as an official PGA Tour event starting in 2013.
All three events do not have a cut, meaning guaranteed prize money and FedEx Cup points for those who participate. This strategy was designed to attract higher ranked players and appears to be working. Top players this week include:
- Justin Thomas (defending champion)
- Keegan Bradley
- Davis Love III
- Ian Poulter
- Pat Perez
- Gary Woodland
- Brendan Steele (last weeks winner)
- Jamie Lovemark
- Stewart Cink
- Xander Schauffele (Tour Championship winner and rookie of the year)
A lot of household names and good golf to follow. Not bad for a PGA tour event in October.