Woods leads world class field at Target Challenge
BY iseekgolf.com | US PGA Tour | 2007 Target World Challenge | Preview | 11 Dec 2007
The amount of world-class players frequently returning for the Target World Challenge presented by Countrywide makes for a strong case that World No. 1 Tiger Woods is the host with the most. Perhaps competitors’ only regret about Woods’ hospitality is that he is also the host with the most championships (three) in his event.
Similar to that of the PGA TOUR season, a spectacular 16-player field will be aiming for Woods’ trophy at the ninth-annual Target World Challenge, a PGA TOUR co-sponsored event held at Sherwood Country Club, Dec. 12-16. The tournament benefits the Tiger Woods Foundation.
The field represents seven countries and includes three of this year’s four major champions – Woods (PGA Championship), Zach Johnson (Masters) and Padraig Harrington (British Open) – as well as Jim Furyk, Steve Stricker, Rory Sabbatini, K.J. Choi, Vijay Singh, Justin Rose, Henrik Stenson, Luke Donald, Niclas Fasth, Paul Casey, Mark Calcavecchia, Davis Love III and Fred Couples.
The Target World Challenge presented by Countrywide field, which accounts for 175 PGA TOUR titles, will compete for shares of a US$5.75 million purse. First prize is US$1.35 million – more than any major and second only to THE PLAYERS Championship on this year’s PGA TOUR – and no golfer leaves with less than US$170,000.
Tournament week begins with a Pro-Am on Wednesday, Dec. 12, and the four-day tournament begins Thursday, Dec. 13, and continues through Sunday, Dec. 16.
This year’s roster features four past Target World Challenge presented by Countrywide champions – Woods (2001, 2004, 2006), Love III (2000, 2003), Donald (2005) and Harrington (2002) – and five golfers who are new to the tournament – Stricker, Sabbatini, Rose, Johnson and Fasth.
The field, which includes 13 of the world’s top 22 golfers, is selected from the top 11 players (who accept invitations) from the Official World Golf Ranking and four special exemption players chosen by the Tiger Woods Foundation.
Players who qualified based on their Official World Golf Ranking as of Sept. 17 are Furyk (No. 3 in the world), Stricker (5), Harrington (7), Sabbatini (9), Choi (10), Singh (12), Rose (13), Stenson (14), Johnson (15), Donald (16), and Fasth (21). Casey, Calcavecchia, Love III and Couples received special exemptions to complete the 16-player field.
“I truly appreciate the support of my fellow golfers and friends,” Woods said. “The player and fan support is the reason why this event is the success that it has become as we enter our ninth year. I take great pride in having an opportunity to play in Southern California and raise funds for kids of my foundation.”
Last year, Southern California native Woods shot a final-round 6-under par 66 to finish at 16-under 272 and win his third Target World Challenge presented by Countrywide by a tournament-record four strokes. Woods, the Target World Challenge presented by Countrywide’s all-time money leader with US$5,597,500, donated his US$1.35 million winner’s share to the Tiger Woods Foundation.
The Jack Nicklaus-designed Sherwood Country Club course (7,064 yards, par-72), which opened 18 years ago, is again expected to provide a stern test for golf’s top players.