Mayday on Tour: Match Play squeezes schedule

TPC Harding Park in San Francisco will host the 2015 WGC Match Play Championship, the 2020 PGA Championship and the 2025 Presidents Cup.

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There won’t be six weeks in May, but the PGA Tour’s projected 2014-15 schedule might make it seem as if the month has been expanded.

Already jampacked with marquee stops, May grew more crowded when officials confirmed that the WGC-Match Play Championship will be staged April 29-May 3 at a new home, Harding Park in San Francisco – with a new format, 16 four-man brackets of round-robin play for three days, followed by 16 winners advancing to single-elimination match play Saturday and Sunday.

It’s a fresh coast of paint on a foundation that might be shaky. The Match Play lacks a title sponsor, and the event could return to February in 2016.

For now, the trick for the Tour will be to make May 2015 work for all concerned, and that won’t be easy.

Consider that the Match Play will be followed by the Tour’s flagship event, The Players Championship, and then the glitzy Wells Fargo Championship. By yielding its slot to the Match Play and moving to May 14-17, Wells Fargo could be squeezed by the following week’s BMW PGA Championship, which attracts most of the marquee Europeans.

Consider Rory McIlroy and his choices for May. Will he play Match Play, Players, Wells Fargo (where he has won) and BMW (as defending champion) right in a row? Will many of his colleagues?

Or will an off week or two remind us once again that too much of a good thing doesn’t guarantee perfect attendance with PGA Tour members?

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Projected 2014-15 PGA Tour schedule

Oct. 9-12 . . . Frys.com Open

Oct. 16-19 . . . Shriners Hospitals for Children Open

Oct. 23-26 . . . McGladrey Classic

Oct. 30-2 . . . CIMB Classic

Nov. 6-9 . . . WGC-HSBC Champions

Nov. 6-9 . . . Sanderson Farms Championship

Nov. 13-16 . . . OHL Classic at Mayakoba

Jan. 9-12 . . . Hyundai Tournament of Champions

Jan. 15-18 . . . Sony Open in Hawaii

Jan. 22-25 . . . Humana Challenge

Jan. 29-Feb. 1 . . . Waste Management Phoenix Open

Feb. 5-8 . . . Farmers Insurance Open

Feb. 12-15 . . . AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am

Feb. 19-22 . . . Northern Trust Open

Feb. 26-March 1 . . . Honda Classic

March 5-8 . . . WGC-Cadillac Championship

March 12-15 . . . Valspar Championship

March 19-22 . . . Arnold Palmer Invitational

March 26-29 . . . Valero Texas Open

April 2-5 . . . Shell Houston Open

April 9-12 . . . Masters

April 16-19 . . . RBC Heritage

April 23-26 . . . Zurich Classic of New Orleans

April 29-March 3 . . . WGC-Match Play Championship

May 7-10 . . . The Players Championship

May 14-17 . . . Wells Fargo Championship

May 21-24 . . . Crowne Plaza Invitational

May 28-31 . . . AT&T Byron Nelson Championship

June 4-7 . . . Memorial Tournament

June 11-14 . . . FedEx St. Jude Classic

June 18-21 . . . U.S. Open

June 25-28 . . . Travelers Championship

July 2-5 . . . Greenbrier Classic

July 9-12 . . . John Deere Classic

July 16-19 . . . Open Championship

July 23-26 . . . RBC Canadian Open

July 30-Aug. 2 . . . Quicken Loans National

Aug. 6-9 . . . WGC-Bridgestone Invitational

Aug. 13-16 . . . PGA Champioinship

Aug. 20-23 . . . Wyndham Championship

Aug. 27-30 . . . The Barclays

Sept. 4-7 . . . Deutsche Bank Championship

Sept. 10-13 . . . Off week

Sept. 17-20 . . . BMW Championship

Sept. 24-27 . . . Tour Championship

Oct. 8-11 . . . Presidents Cup (Incheon, South Korea)

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