The PGA Tour is finished for 2016, but there’s still one truly worldwide golf event left before the calendar year is out. The World Cup of Golf kicks off Thursday Down Under, featuring some of the best players from every corner of the globe. Here’s what you need to know about the four-day tourney.
1. The Basics
What: The World Cup of Golf
Where: Kingston Heath Golf Club, Melbourne, Australia
Watch on Golf Channel:
Wednesday – 8 p.m. to 1 a.m. EST
Thursday – 1 a.m. to 6 a.m. EST, 8 p.m. to 1 a.m. EST
Friday – 1 a.m. to 5 a.m. EST, 8 p.m. to 1 a.m. EST
Saturday – 1 a.m. to 5 a.m. EST, 8 p.m. to 1 a.m. EST
Sunday – 1 a.m. to 5 a.m. EST
In 1953, American industrialist John Jay Hopkins founded the Canada Cup to promote international goodwill through golf. There were just seven countries represented in the Montreal-based event. Hopkins is widely considered the founding father of international golf, the tournament growing year after year to include more players from more countries and conducted at prestigious courses around the world. The tournament became the World Cup of Golf in 1967 and has been biennially contested 57 times. The 2016 edition will be the 58th. Previous champions include Sam Snead, Ben Hogan, Tiger Woods, Jack Nicklaus, Nick Faldo, Seve Ballesteros, Bernhard Langer, Peter Thomson, Ernie Els, Jason Day and the late Arnold Palmer.
The World Cup of Golf boasts a 56-player field representing 28 countries.
In 1953, the format was the aggregate score of a two-man team over 36 holes of stroke play. From 1954-99, it changed slightly to the aggregate score of a two-man team over 72 holes of stroke play.
From 2000-11, the format changed again to two-man teams alternating stroke play rounds of four-ball and foursomes.
The 2013 format reverted slightly to the aggregate score of a two-man team over 72 holes of stroke play, plus individuals competing for the $7 million prize, and the top three teams splitting the remaining $1 million.
This year, the format returns to 72 holes of two-man team stroke play. On Thursday and Saturday, teams will compete in foursomes. On Friday and Sunday, teams will compete in four-balls. The winning team will split the $2.56 million prize of the total $8 million purse.
4. Did You Know…
The World Cup of Golf used to be a part of the World Golf Championship series from 2000 to 2006. Though it’s no longer a WGC event, it’s still sanctioned by the International Federation of PGA Tours.
5. Defending Champs Jason Day and Adam Scott Host the 2016 Contest
Jason Day won the individual prize of $7 million for finishing with the lowest aggregate score to par, 10 under. Adam Scott’s seven-under-par performance pushed the Australian team to victory at 17-under, 10 shots clear of second-place finishers Matt Kuchar and Kevin Streelman of the United States. Scott looks to defend his title at home with partner Marc Leishman, as Day is sitting this event out.
6. The Field
There are three top-10 players in the field (Hideki Matsuyama, Adam Scott and Alex Noren) and 14 others in the top 50. Combined, they have won 29 events in 2016.
Australia: Adam Scott (7), Marc Leishman (53)
Austria: Bernd Wiesberger (46), Martin Wiegele (1315)
Belgium: Thomas Pieters (44), Nicolas Colsaerts (136)
Canada: David Hearn (142), Adam Hadwin (181)
China: Haotong Li (131), Wu Ashun (171)
Chinese Taipei: Chan Shih-chang (189), C.T. Pan (215)
Denmark: Soren Kjeldsen (50), Thorbjorn Olesen (70)
England: Chris Wood (37), Andy Sullivan (40)
France: Victor Dubuisson (93), Romain Langasque (188)
Germany: Alex Cejka (139), Stephan Jaeger (466)
India: SSP Chawrasia (220), Chikkarangappa S (321)
Ireland: Shane Lowry (42), Graeme McDowell (81)
Italy: Francesco Molinari (36), Matteo Manassero (344)
Japan: Hideki Matsuyama (6), Ryo Ishikawa (99)
Korea: Byeong Hun An (43), K.T. Kim (56)
Malaysia: Danny Chia (286), Nicholas Fung (320)
Netherlands: Joost Luiten (60), Darius van Driel (380)
New Zealand: Danny Lee (62), Ryan Fox (158)
Philippines: Miguel Tabuena (153), Angelo Que (453)
Portugal: Ricardo Gouveia (121), José-Filipe Lima (282)
Scotland: Russell Knox (18), Duncan Stewart (315)
South Africa: Jaco Van Zyl (94), George Coetzee (139)
Spain: Rafa Cabrera Bello (30), Jon Rahm (125)
Sweden: Alex Noren (9), David Lingmerth (65)
United States: Rickie Fowler (12), Jimmy Walker (19)
Thailand: Thongchai Jaidee (49), Kiradech Aphibarnrat (75)
Venezuela: Jhonattan Vegas (74), Julio Vegas (1872)
Wales: Bradley Dredge (89), Stuart Manley (873)
7. Who to Watch
Adam Scott has cited Kingston Heath as one of his favorite courses to play. Playing at home with Marc Leishman makes them the team to beat, as long as their games live up to expectations.
Swede Alex Noren has won four times on the European tour this year. His partner, David Lingmerth, has struggld at times this year. His best finish this year on the European tour was a T9 at the Australian PGA Championship.
Jimmy Walker and Rickie Fowler (the only team with both players ranked in the top 20) will look to add to the Americans’ success (recent wins in the Solheim Cup, Presidents Cup and Ryder Cup).
6:30 p.m. – S.S.P. Chawrasia/S. Chikkarangappa (India), Danny Chia/Nicholas Fung (Malaysia)
6:40 p.m. – Victor Dubuisson/Romain Langasque (France), C.T. Pan/Shih-chang Chan (Chinese Taipei)
6:50 p.m. – Jhonattan Vegas/Julio Vegas (Venezuela), Ricardo Gouveia/Jose Filipe Lima (Portugal)
7:00 p.m. – Bernd Wiesberger/Martin Wiegele (Austria), Alex Cejka/Stephen Jaeger (Germany)
7:10 p.m. – Bradley Dredge/Stuart Manley (Wales), David Hearn/Adam Hadwin (Canada)
7:20 p.m. – Jaco van Zyl/George Coetzee (South Africa), Miguel Tabuena/Angelo Que (Philippines)
7:30 p.m. – Ashun Wu/Haotong Li (China), Joost Luiten/Darius van Driel (Netherlands)
7:40 p.m. – Alex Noren/David Lingmerth (Sweden), Soren Kjeldsen/Thorbjorn Olesen (Denmark)
7:50 p.m. – Byeong-Hun An/K.T. Kim (Korea), Thongchai Jaidee/Kiradech Aphibarnrat (Thailand)
8:10 p.m. – Adam Scott/Marc Leishman (Australia), Rickie Fowler/Jimmy Walker (U.S.)
8:20 p.m. – Chris Wood/Andy Sullivan (England), Francesco Molinari/Matteo Manassero (Italy)
8:30 p.m. – Hideki Matsuyama/Ryo Ishikawa (Japan), Ryan Fox/Danny Lee (New Zealand)
8:40 p.m. – Jon Rahm/Rafael Cabrera-Bello (Spain), Thomas Pieters/Nicolas Colsaerts (Belgium)
8:50 p.m. – Russell Knox/Duncan Stewart (Scotland), Shane Lowry/Graeme McDowell (Ireland)