Report: PGA Championship Major May Be Played Abroad
The PGA of America is looking to play the PGA Championship, its signature tournament and major, abroad sometime in the next decade, according to a report in Golf World.
The PGA Championship, golf's final major in the season, "will celebrate its 100th anniversary in 2016, the year golf returns to the Olympics," and "a committee is well into a study of what impact holding the event around the world would have on the 27,000 club and teaching professionals who are PGA of America members and on the overall growth of the game."
"This is an exercise we are going through, an analysis. It is far from a fait accompli that we are going to take the PGA Championship international," PGA of America CEO Pete Bevacqua told Ron Sirak of Golf World. "When we sat down to map our strategic plan to service our members and grow the game the question arose as to what impact it would have to take the PGA Championship to an international location once or twice a decade."
According to Golf World, "the earliest an overseas PGA Championship could happen is 2020, after the current television contract with CBS and Turner Sports expires with the 2019 competition, which was awarded last month to New York's Bethpage State Park."
PGA's America's TV partner "would be one of many organizations that would need to buy into the idea," and Bevacqua acknowledged that "many pieces would have to fall in place."
Bevacqua did acknowledge, though, that "many PGA of America members have expressed interest in expanding the organization's brand globally to increase job opportunities," and protecting the "the 20 PGA club professionals who qualify for the 156 spots in the PGA Championship would be essential."