Golf Sport

The Players Championship

Written by James Potter

The Players Championship is golf’s unofficial fifth major. There are a few reasons why this has come to pass. For starters, the prize money is huge with the purse of just under US$10 million about 20 percent bigger than the majors. It might not be about money for the likes of Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods but make no mistake – that sort of cash sure as hell means a lot to the majority of the players on the tour!

The Players Championship is played yearly at TPC Sawgrass which is one of the finest golf courses in America. Its stunning vistas, perfect greens and challenging layout makes it a true test of one’s abilities. It also features one of the most famous holes in the world – the par three 17th. This hole is surrounded by water and there isn’t a golfer in the world who doesn’t feel a touch of panic when faced with the task of sticking it on the green. To win the Players you have to put the ball on this green four times and any slip up could see your chances disappear to the bottom of the lake.

Some of the best golfers in the world have won this tournament. For guys like Matt Kuchar and Sergio Garcia who are yet to win a major, this title stands as their most significant golfing achievement. Adam Scott also won here in 2004 but now that he has a Masters title the Players Championship has been demoted to a very respectable second on his list of achievements.

Okay, so what about a few tips I hear you ask. Mickelson appears to be hitting some form and it might be time for the big leftie to get the job done again. Tiger should always start as favorite in any tournament he turns up to play and that won’t be any different this week. Rory McIlroy just can’t seem to put four good rounds together at the moment but make no mistake; he will turn up sooner rather than later and win it by five shots without raising a sweat. If you are looking for a few chances at a nice price, I suggest Dustin Johnson and Rickie Fowler. Both have a great game and have been threatening to come out and blast a course apart of late. After all, the Players Championship has been good to quality golfers who are yet to break through for their first major win.

Me? I will be taking Dustin Johnson and, of course, my man Tiger.