PGA moving to May, Players returns to March
(Quail Hollow, NC:) The PGA Championship will no longer need the tag “Glorys Last Shot” given the traditional final Major of the season is moving from an August date to May starting from 2019.
As such, the PGA Championship will become the year’s second Major.
Jason Day with the 2015 PGA Championship trophy (Credit: www.golffile.ie)
Bethpage Page – home to the 2019 PGA Championship – will now see the hosting of the Major in May for a first time since 1949.
The reshuffle will see the Players Championship move from a May date and return to its original March date, which it held from 1977 to 2007.
And The Open, and golf’s Major, will now become the fourth and last Major in the year.
This new arrangement was rubber-stamped on Tuesday US time at a media conference jointly hosted by PGA of America CEO Pete Bevacqua and PGA Tour Commissioner, Jay Monaghan.
The last time a PGA Championship was held in May was 1949, when Sam Snead won at Hermitage Country Club in Virginia.
Unsurprisingly most players are on board with the changes.
“It’s great for the golf schedule,” said McIlroy.
“A May date for the PGA of America is a really good thing, and just from a player’s perspective, to now have one really big tournament every month from March (The Players) to the Masters to the PGA Championship to the US Open to the Open Championship – it just has a better flow to it.”
Phil Mickelson, who has finished in the top-10 nine times at the PGA Championship including a win in 2005 was also positive about the move.
“I like it a lot. It’s a good move for the PGA Championship because you end up having a little bit more excitement as an earlier major as opposed to some of the excitement as golf tends to wane,” said Mickelson.
At the heart of the return of the PGA Championship to May is the desire to conclude the PGA Tour’s FedEx Cup Series before the start of a new NFL season.
And we saw last year the scheduling confusion created by having to move events due to the return of golf the Olympics.
The R&A, as host of The Open, is unconcerned in becoming the last Major in the season as evident when Martin Slumbers, as CEO of the R&A addressed the question recently at Royal Birkdale.
“I think from our perspective I don’t really mind whether we’re the third major or the fourth major,“ he said.
“We try to do our very best with The Open Championship to make it as good as we possibly can do.”
“I can absolutely understand some of the logic, and if it ends up as resulting in more people watching our game, then that’s a great outcome.”