PGA Tour looking at overseas major options

Australia would be among the first nations to put their hand up if the world’s golf bodies agree to play the USPGA Championship “offshore”.

Reports from the US suggest there are plans to make the fourth major, the USPGA, a truly global event by playing it in some other countries – sometime in the future.

Royal Melbourne Royal Melbourne Golf Club

That is unlikely to occur before 2016 when the USPGA will celebrate its 100th anniversary.

Yet there are suggestions a committee has already been set up to study the pros and cons of playing this major outside of the US.

According to PGA of America chief executive Pete Bevacqua nothing is cut and dried although they are analysing such a dramatic move.

“When we sat down to map our strategic plan to service our members and grow the game, the question did arise as to what impact it would have to take the PGA Championship to an international location once or twice a decade,” he said.

“It would be something we would only do if we had the co-operation of quite a few groups.

“And it would need to work for the PGA Tour.

“It would also need to work for the PGA tour players.

“Another would be the PGA in the particular area we would consider.”

Bavacqua explained the USPGA would want the international PGAs to be a part of the move and share in such a major change.

“Many pieces would have to fall into place,” he said.

Venues and television commitments are already secured right through until 2019, so it seems the earliest an international venue would be considered is 2020.

And while Bevacqua suggested there was no specific part of the world under consideration, he did say it was time for their organisation to start thinking outside the box.

Naturally venues like Royal Melbourne, Kingston Heath, New South Wales and Commonwealth, all regarded as world-class venues, would be seriously considered if there was a major championship to be played in Australia.