On May 10, the world's best golfers will tee it up at the Players Championship in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida. It is a great tournament and the Players is considered by some to be the fifth major championship in professional golf. There are some legitimate reasons for this line of thought. Consider these quick facts. It has the largest purse on tour at $9,500,000. That is a handsome sum indeed. The stadium course at TPC Sawgrass is an outstanding venue for golf. This combination always attracts the top players in the world. This year's field has nine of the world's top 10 players. That should make for some good competition, great golf and give the Players Championship a major feel.
What about the history of the Players Championship? Does the history of the tournament say this is a major championship? What level of player has won this event in the past? A quick look at the tournament's history reveals that many of the champions have been outstanding players. For example, three of the first five Players Championship titles were won by none other than Jack Nicklaus. It does not get better than that.
In addition to Nicklaus, other past winners of the Players Championship include Lee Trevino, Raymond Floyd, Sandy Lyle, Nick Price, Greg Norman, Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson. That is a very impressive list. In case you missed it Sandy Lyle was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame on May 7, as was Phil Mickelson.
Beyond these past champions, if you look at all the men that have won a Players Championship most have also won at least one major championship. Some of the names you might remember are Al Geiberger, Lanny Wadkins, Jerry Pate, Hal Sutton, Steve Elkington and David Duval. However, it might have been a little easier to list the names of the winners that have not won a major championship. Four of those players have claimed victory since 2007 when the last major champion, Phil Mickelson, won the Players title. My point is that it has usually taken major championship caliber golf to claim the Players Championship title. While it may never join the traditional majors, it will remain an important title that the world's best will strive to win.
Dwight is an avid golfer. While still relatively new to the game, he plays as often as the weather and his schedule will allow.
- Sports & Recreation
- major championship
- the Players Championship