Koepka, Matsuyama and Watson Among Latest Commitments to 2018 Waste Management Phoenix Open

PHOENIX, Ariz. – Two-time defending champion Hideki Matsuyama, 2017 U.S. Open champion and former WM Phoenix Open winner Brooks Koepka, and two-time Masters champion Bubba Watson are among the latest players to commit to the 2018 Waste Management Phoenix Open, set to tee it up January 29-February 4 at TPC Scottsdale. A field of 132 players will vie for the $6.9 million purse, the $1,242,000 first-place check and 500 FedExCup points.

“It is always special to have a former champion in the field, and Brooks and Hideki represent the last three winners of the Waste Management Phoenix Open,” said Tournament Chairman Carlos Sugich. “Bubba is a great friend to the tournament and always one of the first to commit and we are excited to have him back for 2018 as well.”

Currently ranked fifth in the Official World Golf Rankings, Matsuyama is coming off an excellent 2017 season with three wins including his second consecutive WM Phoenix Open title and three second-place outings that included a runner-up finish at the U.S. Open.

Koepka, the 2015 WM Phoenix Open Champion, won his first Major title at the 2017 U.S. Open at Erin Hills. His strong 2017 campaign included seven top-10 finishes and a victory as part of the winning 2017 U.S. Presidents Cup team. Koepka is currently ranked eighth in the Official World Golf Rankings.

Watson owns nine career PGA TOUR victories, including his Masters wins in 2012 and 2014. He is making his 11th consecutive Waste Management Phoenix Open start, with his best outing coming in 2015 when he finished runner-up to Koepka.

Other top-ranked golfers to commit include Alex Noren (17), Francesco Molinari (21), Charley Hoffman (23), Xander Schauffele (25), Kevin Chappell (33) and Peter Uihlein (49).

PGA TOUR members have until 5 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 26, to commit to play in the Waste Management Phoenix Open. Eligible players are assigned one of 34 PGA TOUR priority ranking categories based on their past performance on TOUR. The field will continue to change as players with higher priority rankings commit to play in the Open.

The 2018 Waste Management Phoenix Open will be held at TPC Scottsdale January 29 – February 4, 2018. “The People’s Open” is the best-attended golf tournament in the world and has gained legendary status for being the most unique stop on the PGA TOUR.  The 2017 tournament broke four attendance records, including a PGA TOUR record 655,434 fans for the week.  The 2018 edition will mark the 83rd playing of the event (one of the five oldest events on the PGA TOUR) and the ninth as the Waste Management Phoenix Open.

The Thunderbirds were founded in 1937 with the mission of promoting the Valley of the Sun through sports. The Thunderbirds consist of 55 “active” members and more than 250 “life” members.  In 2017 The Thunderbirds raised a record $10.1 million for charity from proceeds from last year’s tournament and have eclipsed $122 million in charitable giving since its inception in 1932.  For more information on The Thunderbirds, visit www.thunderbirdscharities.org.

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