NAPLES, Fla. (November 1, 2018) – Tournament Host Greg Norman announced today two additional player commitments and the 12 two-person teams for the QBE Shootout which returns December 5 – 9 to Tiburón Golf Club at The Ritz-Carlton Golf Resort, Naples.
The 24-person field features 12 of the top 50 ranked players in the world who have amassed 13 victories in the past year. Four past champions, including one winning team, are also in the field and six players will be competing in the $3.4 million event for the first time.
Former World No. 1 Luke Donald and QBE Shootout veteran Charles Howell III are the final two players in the field and are among the 18 players returning to the Shootout.
Similar to 2017, this year’s tournament will feature nine new teams and three repeat pairings. Defending champions Sean O’Hair and Steve Stricker will attempt to become the first team to win the QBE Shootout in back-to-back years since 2004. Kevin Chappell and Kevin Kisner will be a team for the third straight year. Tony Finau and Lexi Thompson are paired together for the second straight year after a fourth-place finish in 2017. This marks Thompson’s third straight appearance in Naples as the QBE Shootout is the only PGA TOUR event to have a female professional compete each of the last three years.
“In the last four years, the champions have had to execute on the final hole to secure the QBE Shootout title and with this field and these teams assembled, it should continue to be a very close contest come Sunday afternoon,” Norman said.
Friday’s first round will be broadcast live by Golf Channel from 1:30-4:30 p.m. Saturday’s live coverage will be 1:30-2:30 p.m. on Golf Channel and 2:30-4:30 p.m. on NBC. Sunday’s final round will be live on Golf Channel from 1:00-2:00 p.m. and on NBC from 2:00-4:00 p.m.
“We are thrilled with the quality of the teams competing in this year’s tournament,” Russ Johnston, CEO of QBE North America said. “At QBE, it is our goal to create a dynamic, diverse and inclusive workplace where people can achieve their personal and professional ambitions. For this reason, we are particularly pleased that Lexi Thompson will join us, once again. By encouraging diversity within the QBE Shootout, we are showcasing the importance of equality in everything we do.”
The QBE Shootout will once again feature a scramble format during the first round, a modified alternate shot format on Saturday and a final-round four-ball on Sunday.
CureSearch for Children’s Cancer is the tournament’s primary charitable beneficiary. Since 1989, the Shootout has raised more than $13 million for charitable causes.
For the latest QBE Shootout news and information, visit the official tournament website follow us on Instagram @QBEshootout.
Below is a snapshot of the 12 teams:
Sean O’Hair-Steve Stricker
These two veterans of the QBE Shootout will be playing together for the second time and with their win last year, they both have won the Shootout twice with different partners—O’Hair with Kenny Perry in 2012 and Stricker with Jerry Kelly in 2009. Stricker will be playing in his 11th consecutive Shootout—the most starts by any individual in the field. O’Hair is starting in his seventh.
Tony Finau-Lexi Thompson
Last year, this pairing finished tied for fourth playing together for the first time. Once again, they will also be the youngest team in the field and are the best combined world ranking team (Thompson 7, Finau 15). Power off the tee is another strong characteristic of this team. This season Thompson ranked second averaging over 273 yards and Finau was ranked fourth with over 315 yards per drive.
Kevin Chappell-Kevin Kisner
Playing together for the third consecutive year, having finished fourth in 2016 and 11th last year. Each had a good run in The Open Championship this year. Kisner finished tied for second and Chappell tied for sixth. Kisner was also tied for 12th at the PGA Championship after being second through two rounds.
Billy Horschel-Brandt Snedeker
Two past FedExCup champions make up this team, playing together for the first time in the Shootout. Snedeker won the season-long competition in 2012 and Horschel in 2014. Snedeker’s first-round 59 assisted in his victory this year at the Wyndham Championship and Horschel teamed with Scott Piercy to win the Zurich Classic. Combined this twosome owns 14 career PGA TOUR titles.
Harold Varner III-Bubba Watson
Varner will be a Shootout rookie and Watson returns for a fourth time. Watson was ranked ninth in driving with a 312-yard average and Varner was 18th with a 305 average this past season. Watson is one of two players in the field to win three times this season. Varner has yet to win on TOUR but won the Australian PGA in 2016.
Bryson DeChambeau-Kevin Na
DeChambeau is the other three-time winner this season in the field and returns for his second Shootout while Na, who won at The Greenbrier this year, is a rookie in the event. This Virgo pairing should work well together. While Na is ten years older than DeChambeau, he was born on September 15 and DeChambeau on September 16.
Patton Kizzire-Davis Love III
This twosome out of Sea Island, GA is a combination of a rookie to the Shootout and a past winner. Love, playing for the first time since 2012, won with Tom Kite in 1992. Kizzire picked up his first two career victories this past season at the Mayakoba Golf Classic and Sony Open in Hawaii. Love, the oldest player in the field at 54, is a World Golf Hall of Fame member with 21 career victories.
Pat Perez-Kyle Stanley
Both are making their second straight and second career appearance. Perez teamed with Brian Harman last year to finish third and Stanley was 10th with Russell Henley. They have a combined five career victories on TOUR. Perez has won two of his three, in the past two seasons.
Emiliano Grillo-Graeme McDowell
The international pairing for this year’s tournament. Grillo, the 2016 PGA TOUR Rookie of the Year, is from Argentina and McDowell, the 2010 U.S. Open champion, is from Northern Ireland. Both have team experience. Grillo was on the 2017 International team at the Presidents Cup and McDowell is a four-time Ryder Cup participant for Europe.
Charley Hoffman-Gary Woodland
Two of the 18 players returning to the competition but will be partners for the first time. A combined seven career TOUR wins. Both are ranked among the top 50 in the world. These two have a combined 80 top-ten finishes in their respective careers, Hoffman with 48 and Woodland with 32. Woodland has recorded two top-10s in the last month of this season.
Charles Howell III-Luke List
Another Shootout veteran paired with a first-time competitor. Howell will be making his 10th start in the event. List just finished his fourth season on the PGA TOUR and recorded five top-ten finishes, matching his 2017 performance. Howell is ranked 21st on the TOUR’s Career Money List with over $35 million.
Luke Donald-Andrew Landry
Donald, the former World No. 1, is making his second start and first since 2016 and is paired with a newcomer to the event, who had a breakthrough victory on the TOUR this year at the Valero Texas Open. Donald won the 2004 World Cup with Paul Casey and has represented Europe in four Ryder Cup competitions.