Rejoice! The WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play Championship is underway in Texas.
Yet man who gave the WGCs relevance ain't there.
Let's be honest, Tiger Woods made the WGCs what they are: important, significant, lucrative, the next best thing to the majors. You think they're not? You're wrong. They don't hand out three-year PGA Tour exemptions for just any old event. They do for WGCs.
The former world No.1's complete and utter domination of the events since they landed on the schedule in 1999 has given them gravitas, value, import.
He's not there this week, though. In fact, he hasn't played in a World Golf Championship since the 2014 WGC-Bridgestone Invitational. Sure, injury has enforced some of those absences but despite now being fully fit - and in good form - Woods currently isn't eligible to play in any of the four WGCs on the schedule this year.
That's because, unlike the four major championships, the World Golf Championships don't offer exemptions to former winners. Not even multiple former winners like Tiger.
Crazy? PGA Tour player Erik Compton certainly thinks so. Earlier today, he tweeted this...
I don’t mean to sound extremely silly, but the WGC should have Tiger Woods in the field. just write rule last week “anyone who has over 40 wins #pgatour and is under 50 years old is eligible for the field. Start them as a 64 seed.! Tiger TV!— Erik Compton (@ErikCompton3) March 21, 2018
I'm inclined to agree. and for the following reasons.
Tiger has won $25,678,839 from World Golf Championship appearance alone. Taken on their own, those earnings would be enough to rank him 41st on the PGA Tour career money list, ahead of the likes of Padraig Harrington, Ian Poulter, Paul Casey, Fred Funk, Fred Couples, Jason Dufner and Chris DiMarco.
Tiger Woods has made more money from his 15 appearances in the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational starts than two-time major winner and former Players champion Martin Kaymer has made in his 118 PGA Tour starts.
Tiger has won 18 of the 43 World Golf Championships in which he’s pegged it up. That’s a win rate of 41.9%.
Tiger has 18 career World Golf Championships victories. Jim Furyk has 17 career PGA Tour victories.
Career WGC victories:
18 - Tiger
5 - DJ
3 - Ogilvy
2 - 10 others
Pretty open and shut case, wouldn't you say?
What do you reckon?
Do you agree that Tiger Woods should be exempt for the World Golf Championships? Or do you take a different view? Leave your thoughts in our Comments section below.