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Kevin Murray – Golf photographer like no other: ‘My 10 favourite shots’
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Justin Thomas defends his title as the 105th PGA Championship tees off at Oak Hill Country Club in New York. Here’s the big storylines and FAQs.
The second major of the season will be played May 18-21, with world No. 1 Jon Rahm the favourite to win. The Spaniard has six worldwide victories since October, including his second major win at the Masters and two designated events, the Sentry Tournament of Champions and The Genesis Invitational. A PGA Championship title would make him the first European to hold the Masters, U.S. Open and PGA.
Hot on his heels is Scottie Scheffler, who has won the WM Phoenix Open and The Players this season. The world No. 2 tied for 10th at the Masters, his seventh top-10 finish in 14 starts at the majors.
Brooks Koepka is also one to watch. The LIV golfer returned recently at the Masters where he was in contention on Sunday and tied for second. The two-time PGA Championship winner appears to be finding his best form and usually delivers at the majors.
Defending champion Thomas, who won last time out at Southern Hills Country Club, is a two-time PGA Championship winner, but has looked out of sorts for a while, especially on the greens. Jason Day, coming off his first win in five years having taken home the trophy on Sunday at the Byron Nelson, is an outside bet.
The field will be made up of 156 players before the 70-player cut on Friday night. 99 of the top 100 in the world rankings are playing, with only Will Zalatoris missing after undergoing back surgery. Among players receiving special invitations are talented Danish twins Nicolai and Rasmus Hojgaard.
Four-time PGA Championship winner Tiger Woods is out after undergoing surgery on his right ankle last month, and will probably miss the remaining two majors of 2023 as well.
But Phil Mickelson, tied second at the Masters, will be playing. He shocked the golfing world when he won the 2021 PGA Championship at the Ocean Course at Kiawah Island. At 50 years, 11 months and seven days old, he became the oldest major champion of all time. He didn’t play last year after stepping away from the game briefly in the wake of comments he made regarding LIV Golf and the PGA Tour.
Just like Rory at the Masters each year, Jordan Spieth has a chance to win the career grand slam of winning all four majors if he wins the PGA Championship. He pulled out of last week’s AT&T Byron Nelson because of a left wrist injury, but is still listed in the field of entries.
Oak Hill’s long and soft conditions fit Rory McIlroy’s game perfectly. But the two-time PGA Championship winner is out of form after missing the cut at the Masters and tying for 47th at the Wells Fargo Championship. But he’s a streaky player and he loves this golf course. McIlroy was defending champion the last time the PGA Championship was played at Oak Hill in 2013 and finished tied-eighth, and has since become a member at the course as his wife Erica grew up in the Rochester area.
Yes. Among the 18 LIV golfers competing are Open champion Cameron Smith, two-time PGA champion Brooks Koepka, Dustin Johnson, Bryson DeChambeau, Phil Mickelson and Martin Kaymer.
Thursday (local time)
7:00 a.m: Shaun Micheel, Braden Shattuck, Steven Alker
7:11 a.m: Ben Griffin, Chris French, Joel Dahmen
7:22 a.m: Wyatt Worthington II, Nico Echavarria, Wyndham Clark
7:33 a.m: Tom Hoge, K.H. Lee, Ryan Fox
7:44 a.m: Paul Casey, Adam Svensson, Beau Hossler
7:55 a.m: Zach Johnson, Kurt Kitayama, Sahith Theegala
8:06 a.m: Corey Conners, Ockie Strydom, Joaquin Niemann
8:17 a.m: Kevin Kisner, Jimmy Walker, Padraig Harrington
8:28 a.m: Alex Noren, J.T. Poston, Mackenzie Hughes
8:39 a.m: Lee Hodges, Callm Tarren, David Lingmerth
8:50 a.m: Taylor Moore, Denny McCarthy, Brendan Steele
9:01 a.m: Jeremy Wells, Justin Suh, Adri Arnaus
9:12 a.m: Anthony Cordes, Mark Hubbard, Dean Burmester
12:30 p.m: Matt Cahill, Taylor Montgomery, Cam Davis
12:41 p.m: Michael Block, Hayden Buckley, Taylor Pendrith
12:51 p.m: Alex Beach, Brendon Todd, Sihwan Kim
1:03 p.m: Patrick Reed, Rasmus Hojgaard, Nick Taylor
1:14 p.m: Christiaan Bezuidenhout, John Somers, Chez Reavie
1:25 p.m: Tommy Fleetwood, Cameron Young, Hideki Matsuyama
1:36 p.m: Adam Scott, Max Homa, Tony Finau
1:47 p.m: Xander Schauffele, Tyrrell Hatton, Dustin Johnson
1:58 p.m: Patrick Cantlay, Rickie Fowler, Phil Mickelson
2:09 p.m: Alex Smalley, Russell Henley, Mito Pereira
2:20 p.m: Adam Hadwin, Matt Kuchar, Talor Gooch
2:31 p.m: Justin Rose, Billy Horschel, Francesco Molinari
2:42 p.m: Russell Grove, Patrick Rodgers, Ben Taylor
7:05 a.m: Trey Mullinax, Josh Speight, Kazuki Higa
7:16 a.m: Adam Schenk, Colin Inglis, Thirston Lawrence
7:27 a.m: Min Woo Lee, Andrew Putnam, Emiliano Grillo
7:38 a.m: Harold Varner III, Scott Stallings, Nicolai Hojgaard
7:49 a.m: Steve Holmes, Adrian Otaegui, Davis Riley
8:00 a.m: Scottie Scheffler, Brooks Koepka, Gary Woodland
8:11 a.m: Rory McIlroy, Justin Thomas, Collin Morikawa
8:22 a.m: Viktor Hovland, Shane Lowry, Jordan Spieth
8:33 a.m: Jon Rahm, Matt Fitzpatrick, Cameron Smith
8:44 a.m: Luke Donald, Adrian Meronk, Yannick Paul
8:55 a.m: Kenny Pigman, Davis Thompson, Maverick McNealy
9:06 a.m: Keegan Bradley, Jason Day, Bryson DeChambeau
9:17 a.m: Jesse Droemer, Matt NeSmith, Rikuya Hoshino
12:25 p.m: Sam Ryder, Gabe Reynolds, Brandon Wu
12:36 p.m: Sadom Kaewkanjana, Ben Kern, Thorbjorn Olesen
12:47 p.m: Danny Willett, Webb Simpson, Y.E. Yang
12:58 p.m: Sepp Straka, Harris English, Robert MacIntyre
1:09 p.m: Thomas Pieters, Keith Mitchell, Pablo Larrazabal
1:20 p.m: Lucas Herbert, Brian Harman, Callum Shinkwin
1:31 p.m: Tom Kim, Sam Burns, Abraham Ancer
1:42 p.m: Sungjae Im, Chris Kirk, Seamus Power
1:53 p.m: Si Woo Kim, Stephan Jaeger, Anirban Lahiri
2:04 p.m: Victor Perez, Aaron Wise, Jordan Smith
2:15 p.m: Chris Sanger, J.J. Spaun, David Micheluzzi
2:26 p.m: Thomas Detry, J.J. Killeen, Matt Wallace
2:37 p.m: Nick Hardy, Greg Koch, Eric Cole
The East Course at Oak Hill Country Club in Rochester, New York, hosts its seventh major overall and fourth PGA. In 2019 and 2020, the Donald Ross course underwent an extensive upgrade from Andrew Green, who changed every green complex, fairway and landing zone to return the course closer to the original Ross character. The course now measures just shy of 7,400 yards.
Long hitters might have an advantage, especially in the possible softer conditions. The course was built around the Allen Creek, with water providing a hazard on 9 of its 18 holes. It only has two par 5s and has a difficult finish with a pair of par 4s that are both over 500 yards. Bentgrass playing surfaces, thick rough and strategic, penal bunkering await the field.
Overall, the forecast looks cool to warm with a chance of some rain, with moderate winds. Temperatures will probably range from around 17 degrees to 24. There will be plenty of sun breaking through and Friday looks like it will be the warmest day.
The PGA of America uses a three-hole aggregate format for the playoff. If players are tied after those three holes, they then go to a sudden-death playoff hole.
The winner receives the Wanamaker Trophy, the largest trophy handed out among the four men’s major championships.
The PGA of America, which runs the event, hasn’t yet announced what the purse is for 2023. In 2022, the total prize purse was $15m, with Justin Thomas scooping $2.7m. Will Zalatoris in second got $1.62m, and tied in third, Mito Pereira and Cameron Young $870k each.
With the elevated purses at designated events and majors this season, the prize money is expected to be quite a bit larger than it was a year ago.
The winner gets automatic invites to the three other majors, the US Open, The Open, and the Masters, and the Players Championship for the next five years. They also get PGA Tour membership for the next five years and DP World Tour membership for the next seven years. And the winner will be invited to play in the PGA Championship for life.
Jack Nicklaus and Walter Hagen have both won five.
At Valhalla Golf Club, Kentucky. The 106th PGA Championship will be the fourth major championship contested at Valhalla. Designed by Jack Nicklaus and opened in 1986, Rory McIlroy won the PGA here in 2014 and Tiger Woods triumphed in 2000. Valhalla also hosted the Ryder Cup in 2008.