Why Is the PGA Tour’s Bermuda Championship Witnessing a Shrinking Field?

Published 10/27/2021, 3:00 PM EDT
Jun 17, 2021; San Diego, California, USA; Patrick Reed waves after his putt on the second green during the first round of the U.S. Open golf tournament at Torrey Pines Golf Course. Mandatory Credit: Michael Madrid-USA TODAY Sports


The PGA Tour is traveling all the way to Bermuda for the next leg of the season. The Butterfield Bermuda Championship is underway from Thursday at the Port Royal Golf Course. However, they’re facing a few problems in drawing golfers to play.

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Bermuda is basically paradise for anyone who loves the water. Why would one not one not want to go? Moreover, if the location wasn’t exotic enough, then the perks and benefits should have been enticing enough.

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Since the cancellation of the WGC-HSBC Championship, it has received full status as an event on the tour. It offers 500 FedEx Cup points for the winner, along with an invitation to the 2022 Masters tournament. Moreover, it offers a two-year exemption on the tour! However, apparently, they’re not appealing enough either.

Nevertheless, Matthew Fitzpatrick acknowledged that the stakes were more than enough for him to play. He said, “I don’t think I’ve ever been a favorite for a tournament before. It’s always nice, but for me what was also a big draw as well was that it’s gone to the standard 500 points for a win.”

Golf – The British Masters – Woburn Golf Club – 9/10/15
England’s Matthew Fitzpatrick during the second round
Mandatory Credit: Action Images / Alex Morton
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He added, “It gives me obviously a great chance to get my season up and running and get off to a great start to try and make Tour Championship next year.”

Why are golfers withdrawing from the PGA Tour event?

In the long list of golfers who have withdrawn is 2019 Butterfield Bermuda Champion, Brendon Todd. Others are Cameron Young, Derek Ernest, Lucas Glover, Lanto Griffin, Adam Schenk, Robert Allenby, Jonathan Kaye, Frank Lickliter II, Tommy Armour III, Will MacKenzie and Takumi Kanaya, who finished in the top-10 at last week’s Zozo Championship.

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So, why aren’t they playing? Well, it’s not hard to see that the location plays a major factor. From last week’s location in Japan, Bermuda is a far way off. Moreover, connectivity is not great. Few flights make in and out of the small island territory. And last week, Brian Gay missed his flight to the location because it was ‘too heavy’.

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Secondly, the covid-19 protocols are super strict. All the participating golfers are mandatorily required to either quarantine for 14 days or produce a fully vaccinated certificate upon arrival. In addition, each golfer needs to submit a negative covid report.

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Well, we’ll see a not very high ranked player snag a PGA tour title this time. And that’s because the field only comprises them! However, it’s not all a dead field. Many upcoming golfers will get this chance to prove their worth. In addition, Brian Morris, a terminal cancer patient, has been offered a special chance to play.

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Ishita Bhargava

240 articles

Ishita Bhargava is a Golf content writer at Essentially Sports. Currently pursuing her undergraduate degree from the Shri Ram College of Commerce, she has a keen interest in sports and fitness. When not playing or watching a sports event, Ishita can be seen spending time with her pets or binge-watching.

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