Friday, March 17, 2017

PGA Golf Playing Field for the 2017 WGC-Dell Match Play

The 2017 WGC-Dell Match Play golf tournament on the PGA Tour is taking place this week from March 22-26, 2017, at the Austin Country Club located in Austin, Texas. Here is a list of the playing field of top PGA golfers for the 2017 WGC-Dell Match Play.

The playing field for the 2017 WGC-Dell Match Play is limited to the top 64 ranked golfers in the world who are available to play. Virtually every top golfer in the world will be playing this week but there are a few exceptions.

PGA Golf Playing Field for the 2017 WGC-Dell Match Play

Henrik Stenson, who was ranked 5th in the world when eligibility for this event was determined on March 12, 2017, is not playing this week because he does not like the new round-robin format. Prior to last year, the WGC Match Play was strictly a knockout tournament where if you lost a match you went home. Last year the rules were changed and pool play was introduced.

In the pool play, the 64 players are divided into 16 pools of four players each. Each pool of players then plays round robin matches from Wednesday to Friday. The 16 winners of each pool then advance to Saturday where they play knockout matches. Eight players are eliminated in round one, then four more players in the quarterfinals all on Saturday.

On Sunday, the two semifinal matches take place in the morning and then the championship match takes place on Sunday afternoon along with a match for third place by the two semifinal losers. 

Justin Rose, who is ranked #13 in the world, is also not playing this week because like Henrik Stenson he does not like the format. Adam Scott, ranked #8 in the world, is also skipping the WGC-Dell Match Play because he wants to rest up for the Masters in April. Rickie Fowler, ranked #9, is also not playing because this would be his fourth event in four weeks and he has found that's not good for his game mentally.

The only other top 64 ranked golfer sitting out this event in 2017 is Adam Hadwin, the Canadian who just won for the first time on the PGA Tour on March 12 at the Valspar Championship. Hadwin has a great excuse as he did not think he would be eligible for the WGC-Dell Match Play this year and he's getting married on Saturday, March 25, 2017.

All the other top ranked golfers in the world including Dustin Johnson, Jason Day, Rory McIlroy, Hideki Matsuyama, Jordan Spieth, Justin Thomas and Sergio Garcia are playing. 

Taking the place of the five eligible golfers not playing this week are Jason Dufner, Kim Kyung-tae, Joost Luiten, Pat Perez and Si Woo Kim who are ranked 65 to 69 respectively.

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