Player tweeted his disappointment at the lack of American players in the European Tour's flagship event
Gary Player: ‘Shame For Global Game More US Players Aren’t At Wentworth’
It is the BMW PGA Championship this week at Wentworth and nine-time major winner Gary Player has called it a “shame for the global game” that more Americans aren’t playing in what is the European Tour’s flagship event.
“Unfortunately, I can only count 6 players from the USA playing at Wentworth in the BMWPGA on the European Tour “flagship” event. What a shame for our global game. You can never be a world champion if you stay at home. GP”, Player tweeted.
By our estimations, the South African has over-calculated the number of American players in the field – there are five USA players, not six.
Many of the leading Americans, including Jordan Spieth, are playing in the Fort Worth Invitational this week at Colonial which features a slightly larger purse but less world ranking points.
The highest-ranked American in the field this week at Wentworth is world number 79 Julian Suri, who plays most of his golf on the European Tour.
Suri came through the Challenge Tour and won his first European Tour title at last year’s Made in Denmark tournament.
As well as Suri – Harold Varner III, David Lipsky, Daniel Im and Chase Koepka are the other Americans in the field this week.
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Whilst there may be few USA players here, world number 8 and four-time major winner Rory McIlroy is in the field as well as a host of the European Tour’s finest talents including the likes of Tommy Fleetwood, Alex Noren, Paul Casey, Francesco Molinari, Tyrrell Hatton, Kiradech Aphibarnrat and Ian Poulter.
Unfortunately world number five Justin Rose is playing Stateside this week due to a rule on the PGA Tour where you must play a new tournament each year.
The Fort Worth Invitational clashes with the BMW PGA Championship but it was the Olympic Gold Medalist’s only viable option due to scheduling issues.
There may not be a great deal of American players here this week but there is good news for European fans as world number one Justin Thomas has already committed to the French Open at Le Golf National at the end of June.
It will be Thomas’ second start in a regular European Tour event, having made his debut at the 2013 Dunhill Links Championship.