Watney, Snedeker, McIlroy commit early to TOUR Championship

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Chris Condon/PGA TOUR
Barclays champion Nick Watney has committed to compete in the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola.
August 30, 2012
PGA TOUR staff

ATLANTA -- Nick Watney's 2012 PGA TOUR season had been average by his standards heading into the first event of the FedExCup Playoffs. But his victory at The Barclays put the five-time PGA TOUR winner atop the FedExCup standings and assures him a spot this year's TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola at East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta, Ga., September 19-23.

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Watney, who has reached the TOUR Championship in each of the last three seasons, has officially committed to play. Others who started the FedExCup Playoffs well last week and have given their official commitment to come to East Lake Golf Club include Brandt Snedeker and Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy.

Watney's season has not been poor by any stretch, with 19 of 22 cuts made and 10 top-25 finishes. The difference was that coming into The Barclays, Watney had only recorded three top-10 finishes compared to 10 top-10 finishes in 2011. Watney began the 2011 Playoffs ranked No. 1 in the standings and finished the season at No. 9 in FedExCup points.

Something about The Barclays and final rounds bring out the best in Brandt Snedeker. After shooting 61 in last year's final round to finish T3, Snedeker posted another solid round on Sunday to finish runner-up and jump to No. 2 in the FedExCup standings. The winner of this year's Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines, Snedeker will now reach the TOUR Championship for the third time in his career. If he plays well and remains in the top five in the FedExCup standings, he will control his own destiny and can win the FedExCup with a victory at East Lake.

McIlroy, No. 4 in the FedExCup standings and No. 1 in the Official World Golf Ranking, will tee it up at East Lake still with the momentum from his victory at the PGA Championship. McIlroy is guaranteed to reach the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola for the first time in his career. McIlroy's 2012 PGA TOUR season includes two victories, two runner-up finishes and a third-place finish as part of his seven top-10 finishes. McIlory will also need to play well the next two weeks to enter the TOUR Championship in the top five in the standings.

Following last week's cut to 100 after the first Playoffs event, The Barclays, the field will be cut to 70 after this week's Deutsche Bank Championship, and finally to 30 players following the BMW Championship, setting the field for the finale of the FedExCup, the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola.

Community Impact Update Reminder

As released earlier this week, PGA TOUR and TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola officials announced plans for the tournament's first-ever Executive Women's Day, "Inspiring Women Today & Tomorrow," to be held at East Lake Golf Club on Tuesday, September 18.

The day will include approximately 200 influential local and regional businesswomen coming together for leadership discussions and professional networking opportunities. The events will also highlight community outreach opportunities and make a meaningful impact on charity. Net proceeds from "Inspiring Women Today & Tomorrow" will benefit the East Lake Foundation's CREW Teens Program, which is designed to help East Lake teenagers complete high school and develop a plan for post-secondary education and careers. Participants receive tutoring, homework assistance, standardized test preparation, community service and leadership training, career advisement and assistance with navigating the college admissions and financial aid process.

Starting at 8:30 a.m., Kyra Phillips, former CNN anchor and host of a new daytime program at HLN scheduled to kick off late this summer will serve as the celebrity moderator, leading a panel discussion with Lara O'Connor Hodgson, founder, CEO of NOWaccount Network, and founder, mom and CEO, Nourish Inc.; Bea Perez, The Coca-Cola Company, vice president, chief sustainability officer; Laura Sequenzia, publisher, Golf World; Shirley Franklin, CEO, Purpose Built Communities and former mayor of Atlanta and Shan Cooper, vice president and general manager of Lockheed Martin of Marietta.

Following the breakfast, participants will be led on a behind-the-scenes tour of the entire event and then attend a luncheon featuring Molly Fletcher, Top Sports Agent, Nationally Recognized Author and Motivational Speaker, President & CEO, MWF Enterprises, LLC. A special presentation by East Lake CREW teens will cap off the luncheon. The day will conclude on the back patio of East Lake Golf Club with "Wine Down - Network Up," sponsored by Deloitte that will also feature an optional golf clinic on the East Lake Golf Club practice range, conducted by Head Professional Chad Parker.

Ticket reminder

Weekly and daily grounds tickets for the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola are on sale now. Weekly grounds tickets are $135, and daily ticket prices are $20 for the Wednesday practice round, $45 for Thursday and Friday, and $59 for Saturday and Sunday. Prices do not include tax and fees. To purchase tickets, visit www.PGATOUR.COM/tourchampionship. Other special ticket packages are available locally at Atlanta-area Kroger supermarkets. These prices and specials are available through Sept. 16 and then will be higher the week of the tournament.

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