Mystery Contestants At Grand Slam of Golf

I’m scratching my head at the player choices for the annual Grand Slam of Golf (you can see it tonight from 4-7 pm EST on TNT, and on Wednesday from 5 – 9 EST on the same network). The tournament features Trevor Immelman, Padraig Harrington, Retief Goosen and Jim Furyk.

The idea of the tournament originally was to get the four reigning Major Champions together for a little two day shootout. So naturally, the choice of Trevor Immelman (winner of the 2008 Masters) and Padraig Harrington (winner of the 2008 Open Championship and the 2008 PGA Championship) make sense.

But what about the other two? I have this notion that in the absence of the other tournament winner—or in the case of a multiple winner (such as Harrington), the runners up ought to get a chance to play. In that case, you’d have Sergio Garcia , Ian Poulter or Ben Curtis (filling in for Harrington as the runner up in one of his two victories) and Rocco Mediate (US Open in place of Tiger)

Sergio and Rocco especially would make the tournament fun.

Instead, we have Retief Goosen and Jim Furyk. Fine players and past Major winners, to be sure, but neither really contended at this year’s US Open, PGA Championship or Open Championship. Here’s the tale of the tape:

Jim Furyk:
T 5 at the Open Championship
T 36 at the US Open
T 29 at the PGA Championship

Retief Goosen:
T 32 at the Open Championship
T 14 at the US Open
T 24 at the PGA Championship

Here’s another idea: In the absence of a winner from any particular Major, they should include the winner of one or more of the World Golf Championship events, in which case you’d have Geoff Ogilvy or Vijay Singh. Or perhaps the winner of the BMW Championship, arguably the European Tour’s biggest event, where Miguel Ángel Jiménez was this year’s winner.

I’ll probably tune in this evening for a while. Maybe the plot will be better than the cast.

3 thoughts on “Mystery Contestants At Grand Slam of Golf”

  1. Or why not take the top players from the money list?  #1 this year, Vijay, already on your list, and also the FedEx Cup winner. 

    Then you have Tiger, Phil, Sergio, Perry, and Kim.

    Neither Goosen or Furyk are in the top 10 money list, or the top 10 in the Official World Golf Ranking.

  2. I think one factor is that the PGA of America is involved in this and not the PGA Tour, so the money list is really a non-factor.  They invite only major champions.  As for picking Furyk and Goosen, it could be that anyone else they might have wanted was too busy. You know, like how all the top US players skip the world cup and we’re left with Ben Curtis this year to play in that event. Furyk is a good player for this event though since he carries on a running conversation with Fluff and he’s wearing a microphone.

  3. An Update:  They just said on day 2 of the coverage that there’s a points system in place to pick the alternates and apparently Furyk and Goosen ranked highest in the 4 majors when using this points system.  Maybe the PGA website has more on it.


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