The PGA TOUR announced the four featured groupings THE PLAYERS Championship for Thursday, March 12, and Friday, March 15, at THE PLAYERS Stadium Course at TPC Sawgrass in Ponte Vedra Beach.
Full groupings and starting times for the first two rounds of THE PLAYERS Championship will be released officially at approximately noon Tuesday, March 10.
Some notable pairings include defending champion Rory McIlroy, Jon Rahm and Brooks Koepka. The three players are ranked No. 1, No. 2 and No. 3, respectively, in the official World Golf Ranking. Also, of note three former PLAYERS champions – Matt Kuchar, Henrik Stenson and Sergio Garcia – are paired together.
See below for featuring groupings:
Rory McIlroy, Jon Rahm, Brooks Koepka
Notable: McIlroy (1), Rahm (2) and Koepka (3) are the top three players in the Official World Golf Ranking.
• In 2019, McIlroy became the first player to win THE PLAYERS Championship and the FedExCup in the same season.
• Rahm held the 54-hole lead at THE PLAYERS in 2019, the first of his PGA TOUR career, before closing with a 4-over 76 to finish T12.
• In 2018, Koepka shot a course-record-tying 63 in the final round en route to his best finish at the event (T11).
Viktor Hovland, Collin Morikawa, Matthew Wolff
Notable: Each recent first-time winner is making his tournament debut at THE PLAYERS.
• Hovland became the first PGA TOUR winner from Norway and the first rookie to win in 2019-20 when he won the 2020 Puerto Rico Open.
• Morikawa holds the PGA TOUR’s longest active made-cuts streak (21) and has not missed a cut since turning professional.
• Wolff, a teammate of Hovland’s at Oklahoma State, won the 2019 3M Open in just his fourth career start at age 20 to become the PGA TOUR’s youngest winner since Jordan Spieth at the 2013 John Deere Classic.
Matt Kuchar, Henrik Stenson, Sergio Garcia
Notable: Each player is a past champion of THE PLAYERS.
• Kuchar, a nine-time PGA TOUR winner, won THE PLAYERS in 2012 and won twice during the 2018-19 season.
• Stenson, along with Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy, is one of three players to win THE PLAYERS, the FedExCup, a major championship and a World Golf Championships event.
• In addition to his win in 2008, Garcia has runner-up finishes at THE PLAYERS in 2007 and 2015 as well as a third-place result in 2014.
Justin Rose, Adam Scott, Xander Schauffele
• Rose, the 2017-18 FedExCup champion, earned his second top-10 at TPC Sawgrass in 2019 (T8).
• Scott, winner of THE PLAYERS in 2004, earned his 14th PGA TOUR title at this season’s The Genesis Invitational.
• Runner-up at THE PLAYERS in 2018, Schauffele is currently No. 12 in the FedExCup standings, having lost in playoffs at the WGC-HSBC Champions and Sentry Tournament of Champions.
Phil Mickelson, Dustin Johnson, Webb Simpson
• Mickelson, a 44-time PGA TOUR winner, won THE PLAYERS in 2007.
• Johnson, who recorded his first top-10 in the event in 2019 (T5), became the first player since Steve Elkington in 1997 to record all four rounds in the 60s at THE PLAYERS.
• Winner of THE PLAYERS in 2018, Simpson enters the event No. 5 in the FedExCup standings with a win at the Waste Management Phoenix Open and a playoff loss at The RSM Classic.
Rickie Fowler, Justin Thomas, Jordan Spieth
• Fowler, who won THE PLAYERS in 2015, has two top-10s in six starts on the season (T5/Sentry Tournament of Champions, T10/The American Express).
• Thomas enters the week No. 2 in the FedExCup standings and has finished no worse than No. 7 in the last three seasons (first/2017, seventh/2018, third/2019).
• Spieth’s best result in six starts at THE PLAYERS came in 2014 when he finished in a tie for fourth.
Patrick Reed, Hideki Matsuyama, Patrick Cantlay
• Reed earned his eighth PGA TOUR title at the WGC-Mexico Championship in February.
• Matsuyama (No. 10) is the only player in the top 10 of the FedExCup standings without a win on the season; he has recorded three top 5’s, highlighted by a solo-second at the ZOZO CHAMPIONSHIP in his home country of Japan.
• Cantlay, a two-time PGA TOUR winner, finished a season-best runner-up at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open and is currently No. 6 in the Official World Golf Ranking.
Bryson DeChambeau, Sungjae Im, Gary Woodland
• DeChambeau has finished in the top five in three consecutive starts (T5/The Genesis Invitational, second/WGC-Mexico Championship, fourth/Arnold Palmer Invitational).
• Im holds the No. 1 position in the FedExCup standings, becoming the third-youngest player to reach that mark, behind Joaquin Niemann and Jordan Spieth.
• Woodland, the reigning U.S. Open champion, has four top-10s on the season, including a T8 at The Honda Classic in his most recent start.