After announcing two weeks ago during a media day event that four-time major champion Rory McIlroy would headline the CJ Cup in South Carolina later this month at Congaree Golf Club, the field got another boost Monday with several stars of the recent Presidents Cup announcing their commitments to play in the unique PGA Tour event in rural Ridgeland.
McIlroy is the defending CJ Cup champion, and instead of defending his crown in Las Vegas, the reigning FedEx Cup winner will do it right here in the Lowco — and it looks like he will have plenty of competition, as Presidents Cup stars Si Woo Kim, Tom Kim, Collin Morikawa, and Justin Thomas have joined the field that will tee it up from Oct. 19-23 at Congaree.
“This will be my first time beginning a PGA Tour season with a title defense, so I will enjoy drawing back on positive memories from 2021,” McIlroy said. “I am really looking forward to seeing what Congaree is all about. From the design of the golf course to the overall player experience, everything I have heard about it from those who played the tournament in 2021 was overwhelmingly positive.”
It’s the second straight year that Congaree has hosted a PGA TOUR event. The track was the home for last year’s Palmetto Championship in June, which took the place of the RBC Canadian Open for 2021. South African Garrick Higgo captured the title for his first-ever TOUR victory.
The CJ Cup was launched as Korea’s first official PGA TOUR tournament in 2017 and was played for three consecutive years at Nine Bridges on Jeju Island before being relocated to the U.S. due to the challenges of COVID-19. It makes its way to the Lowco after being played in Las Vegas the last two years, first at Shadow Creek Golf Course in 2020 and The Summit Club last year.
The CJ CUP in South Carolina will have a field of 78 players including five designated by the Korea Professional Golfers’ Association. The three highest-ranking players of Korean nationality will also be at Congaree alongside top golfers from the 2021-22 FedEx Cup points list and sponsor exemptions.
Among the Korean standouts will be Si Woo Kim and Tom Kim, two of the international stars in the recent Presidents Cup at Quail Hollow in Charlotte. Si Woo Kim was the International Team’s top point-winner, going 3-1 with a singles win over Thomas on Sunday. A three-time PGA Tour winner, including the 2017 Players Championship, Si Woo Kim has also been a regular at the RBC Heritage Presented by Boeing, where he was runner-up in 2018. Tom Kim went 2-3 in his Presidents Cup debut after a strong season on the PGA Tour in which the 20-year-old made 10 of 11 cuts and won the Wyndham Championship.
Morikawa earned two points for the U.S. Team and finished the week 2-1-0 in his Presidents Cup debut at Quail Hollow. The former UCLA Bruin owns five career PGA Tour titles, including two major championships, and will make his debut appearance at Congaree and fourth CJ Cup start after finishing runner-up to McIlroy a year ago.
In his third Presidents Cup appearance, Thomas finished 4-1-0 on the week for the victorious U.S. Team. Thomas has won 15 career PGA Tour titles, including two at The CJ Cup at Nine Bridges in 2017 and 2019.
Daily Grounds tickets for the event are on sale now at CJCUPSouthCarolina.com. Children aged 15 and under are free, with a maximum of two per ticketed adult.
Please visit our sustaining sponsors online!
EMAIL US at LowcoSports@gmail.com to find out how to become a sustaining sponsor and support grassroots LOCAL sports coverage!