Rowdy, unruly, boisterous, loud--yep, it's Phoenix Open week

Rowdy, unruly, boisterous, loud--yep, it's Phoenix Open week

Reid Spencer Publisher
image (AP File Photo/Ng Han Guan)
Hideki matsuyama is set to defend his title in the Waste management Phoenix Open, the tournament famous for rowdy record crowds.

The most raucous, best-attended event on the PGA Tour gets under way on Thursday at TPC Scottsdale, the epicenter of professional golf theater.

Most pros love the hoopla that accompanies the Waste Management Phoenix Open, with the din reaching a crescendo on the short, par-3 16th, a hole surrounded by grandstands full of boisterous fans, many of whom derive their rowdy nature from alcohol.

Last year the tournament drew an estimated 655,434 attendees, far surpassing the season-long home attendance for the Arizona Cardinals NFL team in Glendale (513,741). And from the look and sound of it, everyone at the Waste Management Phoenix had a rollicking good time.

While the temperature in the Sonoran Desert will average in the low 80s, European Tour players competing in the Maybank Championship in Malaysia will face temps in the low 90s made worse by high humidity and the probability of thunderstorms, which invariably seem to disrupt play in this event.

The LPGA Tour has the week off after finishing up in the Bahamas on Sunday, but the Tour is in action at the Panama Championship.



Site: Scottsdale, Ariz.

Course: TPC Scottsdale. Yardage: 7,216. Par: 71.

Purse: $6.9 million. Winner's share: $1,242,000.

Television: Thursday-Friday, 3-7 p.m. (Golf Channel). Saturday, 2-3:45 p.m. (Golf Channel), 4-7 p.m. (CBS); Sunday, 1-2:45 p.m. (Golf Channel), 3-6 p.m. (CBS).

Defending champion: Hideki Matsuyama.

Last week: Jason Day won the Farmers Insurance Open.

FedEx Cup leader: Patton Kizzire.

Notes: The field features five of the top 10 players in the world, led by Jon Rahm (left). ... Rahm tied for fifth in Phoenix when he was a junior at Arizona State. It was the best finish by a Sun Devil still in school. ... Matsuyama has not finished worse than fourth in his four appearances at the TPC Scottsdale. ... Matt Kuchar makes his PGA Tour debut this year. He tied for 32nd in Abu Dhabi. ... Phil Mickelson is making his 29th appearance, breaking the record he shared with Gene Littler. His three victories are tied with Littler, Arnold Palmer and Mark Calcavecchia. ... Jordan Spieth has a pair of top 10s in his previous two starts. ... Julian Suri, who grew up in Jacksonville, Florida, and earned his European Tour card through the Challenge Tour, is playing on a sponsor's exemption for the second straight week. ... Steve Stricker is playing for the first time on the PGA Tour since August.

Next week: AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am.





Site: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Course: Saujana Golf & CC. Yardage: 7,186. Par: 72.

Purse: $3 million.

Television: Wednesday-Thursday, 10:30 p.m.-2:30 a.m. (Golf Channel); Thursday-Friday, 2:30-5:30 a.m. (Golf Channel); Friday-Saturday, 9:30 p.m.-2 a.m. (Golf Channel).

Defending champion: Fabrizio Zanotti.

Last week: Li Haotong won the Omega Dubai Desert Classic.

Race to Dubai leader: Tommy Fleetwood (photo).

Notes: Li is playing for the third straight week. He is the first Chinese to be crack the top 50 in the world ranking. ... Henrik Stenson leads the field in Malaysia. Also playing is former Masters champion Danny Willett. ... Darren Clarke is in the field. He has not made the cut in a European Tour event since Royal Troon in the 2016 British Open. ... Ryo Ishikawa of Japan is playing on a sponsor's exemption. Also getting an invitation is Yasuka Miyazato, who finished at No. 50 last year to earn a spot in the Masters. ... Coming off two weeks in the United Arab Emirates, the European Tour next goes to Australia before returning to the Middle East for two tournaments in Oman and Qatar.

Next week: ISPS Handa World Super 6 Perth.





Site: Panama City.

Course: Panama GC. Yardage: 7,171. Par: 70.

Purse: $625,000. Winner's share: $112,500.

Television: None.

Defending champion: Andrew Putnam.

Last week: Adam Svensson won the Bahamas Great Abaco Classic.

Money leader: Sungjae Im.

Next week: Club Colombia Championship.




Last week: Brittany Lincicome won the Pure Silk-Bahamas LPGA Classic.

Next tournament: ISPS Handa Women's Australian Open on Feb. 15-18.




Last tournament: Jerry Kelly won the Mitsubishi Electric Championship.

Next week: Boca Raton Championship.





PGA Tour of Australasia: Oates Vic Open, 13th Beach Golf Links, Barwon Heads, Australia. Defending champion: Dimitrios Papadatos. Online:


Ladies European Tour: Oates Vic Open, 13th Beach Golf Links, Barwon Heads, Australia. Defending champion: Melissa Reid. Online:

The Associated Press contributed the thumbnail tournament descriptions to this story.

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