PGA Tour CEO says they are here to stay in Japan

The fact that golfing icon Tiger Woods figured so prominently all week certainly did them no harm.

Now golf-mad Japan is expected to further strengthen its ties with the biggest golf tour in the world, the US PGA Tour, following the unprecedented success of last week’s ZOZO Championship.

Tiger Woods Woods holds the inaugural ZOZO Championship trophy (Credit: PGA Tour)

Tiger leading almost all the way to win would have only further ignited the passion this country has for the game.

Throw in Rory McIlroy and Jordan Spieth and Japan’s golf fans were in Seventh Heaven.

“When we make a commitment to bring a new event to a market, that’s a commitment that is permanent,” was the comment from US PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan.

“Our intention is to never leave Japan, to always have a PGA Tour event in Japan from this day forward.”

Certainly there is already an agreement for the ZOZO Championship to take place until 2025 and with the help of Japanese business giant Yusaku Maezawa, that could easily be extended.

“For an event of this magnitude to take place, we’re very fortunate to have many passionate people who have helped make the Zozo Championship a reality,” said Monahan.

The ZOZO Championship, co-sanctioned with the Japan Golf Tour, is one of three tournaments that make up the PGA Tour’s Asia Swing.

The CJ Cup in South Korea was won last week by Justin Thomas and the HSBC Champions will take place this week in Shanghai, China.

Woods’ return to form to catch Sam Snead and win his 82nd Tour event has only added merit to the event.

Tiger had not played in Japan in any official events since 2006 when he was the star attraction at the Dunlop Phoenix, losing in a playoff to Ireland’s Padraig Harrington.

No doubt ZOZO chief executive Maezawa will leave no stone unturned to get Woods back to defend his title in 2020.