Ian Poulter, the British golfer whose intensity has been a mainstay of Ryder Cup golf, has teamed with former U.S. Open champion Australian Geoff Ogilvy, who has played on three Presidents Cup teams, announced Steve Worthy, CEO of the Fore!Kids Foundation, producer of the tournament.
“Ian is very well known for his team golf success and has compiled a 12-4-2 record over his Ryder Cup career,” said Worthy. “Geoff for his part has won two World Golf Championship—Match Play titles to go with his U.S. Open championship,” Worthy added.
Poulter has won twice on the PGA TOUR, both World Golf Championship events, and he has posted 13 international victories on the European, Japanese and Australian tours. Until his injury last season, he had made the FedExCup Playoffs nine consecutive years.
He played on the European Ryder Cup team five times and served as vice captain of the team last year. He also made five World Cup teams, three Seve Trophy teams and one Eurasia Cup squad.
He splits his schedule between the PGA and European tours. He last played the Zurich Classic in 2009, when he finished tied for 13th. His best finish in the Zurich Classic was a tie for seventh in 2006.
In his first year on the European Tour, he won the Sir Henry Cotton Rookie of the Year award thanks to a victory in the Italian Open.
Ogilvy has won eight times on the PGA TOUR and twice on the Australian Tour. He ranks with Tiger Woods as the only players to win two World Golf Championship match play titles. He also became only the second Australian to win the U.S. Open in 2006, a first since 1981.
He has qualified for three Presidents Cup teams and posted a record of 3-1-1 in a losing effort for the 2011 International team in the Presidents Cup played at his home club, Royal Melbourne GC.
His best tournament this season was a tie for fourth in the Shriners Hospital for Children Open. His highest finish in New Orleans was a tie for second in the 2002 Compaq Classic.
The Zurich Classic this year will feature the strongest field in recent history, with six players ranked in the world’s top 10, nine in the top 20 and 15 in the top 30.
Top ten players entered include Jason Day (third), Hideki Matsuyama (fourth), Jordan Spieth (fifth), Henrik Stenson (sixth), Justin Rose (eighth) and Rickie Fowler (ninth). Justin Thomas was tenth in the world but dropped to 11th in this week’s rankings following the RBC Heritage.
Day, ranked number one in the world for 47 weeks, is teaming with Fowler. Masters runner-up and Olympic gold medal winner Rose has paired with Olympic silver medalist Stenson in this year’s unique team format.
The new 72-hole stroke play format will feature Foursomes (alternate shot) during the first and third rounds and Four-Ball (best ball) during the second and fourth rounds. The starting field will consist of a field of 80 teams. Following the conclusion of the second round, the field will be cut to the low 35 teams and ties at the 35th position. In case of a tie after 72 holes, there will be a sudden-death playoff using the Four-Ball format.
About Fore!Kids Foundation:
Since 1958, the Fore!Kids Foundation has raised money to fund children’s service organizations through golf events like the Zurich Classic of New Orleans, the Golf Ball Gala and several charitable golf tournaments. As a 501(c)(3) corporation, Fore!Kids has helped to raise more than $32 million to date for children’s charities in metro New Orleans and Baton Rouge. More information at www.forekidsfoundation.com.
About the Zurich Classic of New Orleans:
Televised in more than 224 countries and territories, the Zurich Classic of New Orleans generates a significant economic impact on the city of New Orleans and the entire state of Louisiana. Independent research has shown that the tournament generates spending of more than $40 million within the local economy and garners $33 million in positive national and international media exposure for both the city and state throughout the year beyond the four days of competition.
The tournament will be played April 24-30, 2017 at TPC Louisiana in Westwego. Purse for 2017 totals $7.1 million, with each member of the winning team earning $1,022,400.
Single-day grounds tickets are only $25 each in advance and $35 each the week of the tournament starting April 24. Weekly passes are $75 and choices of suite and specialty venue options are available by calling the Tournament Office at 504-342-3000or online at www.zurichgolfclassic.com.