After 46 tournaments and 10 months of action, the PGA Tour season comes to an end this week with The Tour Championship.
The world top-30 ranked golfers have qualified for the event, which will be held in its traditional home at East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta, Georgia.
This year’s tournament differs from any of its previous editions, as the PGA has introduced a new format to simplify the season finale.
Specifically, it is designed to ensure the winner of The Tour Championship is also the winner of the FedEx Cup.
Since the FedEx Cup Playoffs made their debut in 2007, the winner of the FedEx Cup has differed from the winner of The Tour Championship—the last event of the three-legged playoffs—on four occasions.
That happened twice in the last three seasons, including last year, when Tiger Woods won The Tour Championship and Justin Rose claimed the FedEx Cup.
Under the new format, FedEx Cup leader Justin Thomas will start the event at 10-under par, while second seed Patrick Cantlay will start at 8-under.
Rory McIlroy, who is currently ranked fifth in the FedEx Cup standings, will start at 5-under, with subsequent descending scores down to even par for players ranked between 26th to 30th.
The new format has attracted criticism and the Northern Irishman was among those who are yet to be convinced by it.
“I get it from a fan experience point of view,” he said in the pre-tournament press conference. “I get it from giving guys that have played better throughout the year an advantage. But at the same time, it will make it sweeter for a guy that starts at even or 1-under par and goes all the way through the field and wins. Or if Justin Thomas shoots the tied low score of the week and doesn’t end up winning […] I don’t know.”
Jason Kokrak and Lucas Glover, the two lowest-ranked players among the 30 who have qualified for The Tour Championship, will get proceedings underway at 11:45 a.m.
Players will then tee off pair in ascending order of ranking in the FedEx Cup standings, with Cantlay and Thomas teeing off at 2:05 p.m.
Here’s everything you need to know ahead of Thursday.
- 11:45 a.m.—Lucas Glover, Jason Kokrak
- 11:55 a.m.—Louis Oosthuizen, Charles Howell III
- 12:05 p.m.—Chez Reavie, Bryson DeChambeau
- 12:15 p.m.—Corey Conners, Sungjae Im
- 12:25 p.m.—Marc Leishman, Tommy Fleetwood
- 12:35 p.m.—Rickie Fowler, Kevin Kisner
- 12:45 p.m.—Justin Rose, Brandt Snedeker
- 12:55 p.m.—Hideki Matsuyama, Paul Casey
- 1:05 p.m.—Adam Scott, Dustin Johnson
- 1:15 p.m.—Gary Woodland, Tony Finau
- 1:25 p.m.—Webb Simpson, Abraham Ancer
- 1:35 p.m.—Matt Kuchar, Xander Schauffele
- 1:45 p.m.—Rory McIlroy, Jon Rahm
- 1:55 p.m.—Brooks Koepka, Patrick Reed
- 2:05 p.m.—Patrick Cantlay, Justin Thomas
- On Thursday and Friday, coverage begins at 1 p.m. ET on Golf Channel and runs until 6 p.m. ET. Coverage of featured groups will be available between 11:30 a.m. ET on both days via PGA Tour Live.
Golf Channel will also broadcast live action between 1 p.m. ET and 2:30 p.m. ET on Saturday and between 12 p.m. ET and 1:30 p.m. ET on Sunday.
NBC will take over at 3 p.m. ET on Saturday and at 2 p.m. ET on Sunday, covering the final two rounds.
All four days of the tournament can be watched online via PGA Tour Live and on Golf Channel’s digital platforms, while the last two rounds will also be available online via NBC’s website.
A live stream for all the four rounds will be available via fuboTV.
Because of the new format that has been introduced this year at The Tour Championship, Justin Thomas will start at 10-under by virtue of being the FedEx Cup leader.