64-Man Field Divided Into Four New 16-Player Brackets Honoring Golf Greats
CARLSBAD, Calif., Feb. 24, 2003 –– The 2003 annual World Golf Championships tee off with the Accenture Match Play Championship Feb. 26 through Mar. 2 at the renowned La Costa Resort and Spa in Carlsbad, Calif..
At the Accenture event, the top 64 available players from the Official World Golf Ranking as of Feb. 17 go head-to-head in single-elimination match play competition for a top prize of $1 million and the coveted Walter Hagen Cup, named after one of the game’s greatest match-play players.
This is the fourth time in its five-year history that the event, which once again will feature one of the strongest fields in all of golf, is being held at La Costa. Sixty-four of the world’s top sixty-five players, including Tiger Woods, Ernie Els, Phil Mickelson and Vijay Singh, are committed to play.
"The Accenture Match Play Championship has become one of the most anticipated and widely watched events in The World Golf Championship series," said James E. Murphy, Accenture’s global managing director of marketing and communications. "Our sponsorship of the Accenture Match Play Championship, as well as the company’s support for other sporting, business and cultural events, provides Accenture with the opportunity to directly connect with our clients and key business leaders around the world and increase the value of the Accenture brand through activities that celebrate competition and human excellence."
The four 16-player brackets, new for this year, will make the event even more exciting while honoring four of the game’s greatest players; the brackets are named for Ben Hogan, Bobby Jones, Gary Player and Sam Snead. Players in each of the brackets will be seeded No. 1 through No. 16, with the top-ranked golfer playing the No. 16 seed, No. 2 pairing off with No. 15, No. 3 meeting No. 14, and so forth in the first round.
In this new format, the highest-ranked player from the Official World Golf Ranking will be the top seed in the Bobby Jones bracket and will play the 64th-ranked player, who will also be seeded in that bracket. The next-highest-ranked player will be the top seed in the Gary Player bracket, while the third- and fourth-highest-ranked players will be the top seeds in the Snead and Hogan brackets, respectively.
Unlike stroke play, which tallies the number of strokes from all 18 holes to determine the winner, match play is a hole-by-hole format from the very first hole, providing a player with the ultimate test of his game. The player winning the most holes wins the match.
The Accenture Match Play Championship is unique in golf, as the tournament’s distinctive single-elimination format provides any competitor who has stepped up his game with the opportunity to become champion after five days of play. Players match each other shot for shot and hole for hole in an effort to win their bracket and determine who plays in the dramatic 36-hole championship match.
The event will be televised to more than 140 countries. ESPNEWS will televise the announcement of the brackets and first-round matches when they are made official on Feb. 24. ESPN and ABC Sports will also televise 24 hours of live tournament coverage in addition to preview, pre-game and late-night highlight shows throughout Championship week.
Previous winners of the Accenture Match Play Championship are Kevin Sutherland, 2002; Steve Stricker, 2001; Darren Clarke, 2000; and Jeff Maggert, 1999.
About the Accenture Match Play Championship
This year marks the fifth playing of the World Golf Championships—Accenture Match Play Championship, one of four World Golf Championships sanctioned and organized by the International Federation of PGA Tours. The other World Golf Championships include the American Express Championship, NEC Invitational and World Cup. For more information, please visit www.worldgolfchampionships.com.
Accenture is the world’s leading management consulting and technology services company. Committed to delivering innovation, Accenture collaborates with its clients to help them realize their visions and create tangible value. With deep industry expertise, broad global resources and proven experience in consulting and outsourcing, Accenture can mobilize the right people, skills, alliances and technologies. With more than 75,000 people in 47 countries, the company generated net revenues of $11.6 billion for the fiscal year ended August 31, 2002. Its home page is www.accenture.com.