FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
NEW ORLEANS, LA (April 5, 2018)—Two South African players who have both won major titles are teaming up to play the 2018 Zurich Classic of New Orleans, announced Steve Worthy, CEO of the Fore!Kids Foundation, producer of the tournament.
Charl Schwartzel, who won the Masters in 2011, and Louis Oosthuizen, who won The Open Championship in 2010, will play together in the 2018 Zurich Classic.
They will be joined by Zach Johnson, whose 12 PGA TOUR victories include the 2007 Masters and the 2015 Open Championship. Johnson will team with Jonathan Byrd.
“Charl has never played in our tournament, and Louis played his first time here last season,” said Worthy. “Adding Zach Johnson and Jonathan Byrd gives us two more impressive teams with four major titles among them,” added Worthy.
Oosthuizen’s lone PGA TOUR victory was a big one—the 2010 Open Championship. He also claimed second place finishes in the 2012 Masters, which he lost in a playoff against Bubba Watson; the 2015 Open Championship, when he was in a three-person playoff eventually won by Zach Johnson; and the 2015 U.S. Open, which he missed winning by one stroke after an opening round of 77. He has also posted 12 international victories.
His best finish this season was a tie for ninth in the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play, when he advanced out of group play with a one-hole sudden-death playoff against Jason Dufner.
He and Branden Grace tied for 24th in the 2017 Zurich Classic, the first time either one played the tournament.
Currently ranked 32nd in the world, he has played in the last three Presidents Cups and in the 2011 World Cup.
Schwartzel, who has never played the Zurich Classic, has placed in the top 25 a total of 70 times in his PGA TOUR career since 2009. In addition to the 2011 Masters title, he won the 2016 Valspar Championship. He has won another 13 tournaments internationally.
His best finish this season was a tie for 28th in the CJ Cup Nine Bridges tournament.
Schwartzel has played on the last four Presidents Cup teams and the 2011 World Cup team with Oosthuizen.
Johnson has two majors among his 12 PGA TOUR victories to go with 10 seconds, 10 thirds and 77 top 10 finishes. He won the Masters in 2007 and The Open Championship in 2015.
He ranks 12th in all-time winnings with more than $43 million in his career. His best finish this season was a tie for eighth in the RSM Classic. He last played the Zurich Classic in 2008.
He has played on five Ryder Cup teams, four Presidents Cup squads and one World Cup.
Byrd has won five times on the PGA TOUR, including the 2010 Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals for Children Open which he won with a historic walk-off hole-in-one in the playoff.
He won the Web.com Championship to reclaim his TOUR card this season. His best finish so far this year was a tie for 25th at the Sony Open in Hawaii. His top finish at the Zurich Classic was a tie for 12th in 2008.
He was a three-time All-American at Clemson and played on the 1999 Walker Cup team that included Matt Kuchar.
The Zurich Classic is the only team tournament on the PGA TOUR season. This year’s 72-hole stroke team play format will feature Four-Ball (best ball) during the first and third rounds and Foursomes (alternate shot) during the second and fourth rounds. The starting field will consist of 80 teams. Following the conclusion of the second round, the field will be cut to the low 35 teams and ties. In case of a tie after 72 holes, there will be a sudden-death playoff using the Four-Ball format.
Already committed to the tournament are Justin Thomas, ranked second in the world; Jon Rahm, ranked third; Sergio Garcia, the reigning Masters champion; Bubba Watson, who has won twice this season, playing with Matt Kuchar; Ian Poulter, who won this week to qualify for the Masters; U.S. Ryder Cup captain Jim Furyk; 2016 Olympic medalists Justin Rose and Henrik Stenson and Patrick Reed, known for his intensity in team competition.
About Fore!Kids Foundation:
Since 1958, the Fore!Kids Foundation has raised money to fund children's service organizations through golf events like the Zurich Classic of New Orleans, the Taste of the Tournament gala and several charitable golf tournaments. As a 501(c)(3) corporation, Fore!Kids has helped to raise more than $34 million to date for children’s charities in metro New Orleans and Baton Rouge. More information at www.forekidsfoundation.com.
About the Zurich Classic of New Orleans:
Televised in more than 224 countries and territories, the Zurich Classic of New Orleans generates a significant economic impact on the city of New Orleans and the entire state of Louisiana. Independent research has shown that the tournament generates spending of more than $40 million within the local economy and garners $33 million in positive national and international media exposure for both the city and state throughout the year beyond the four days of competition.
The tournament will be played April 23-29, 2018 at TPC Louisiana in Westwego. Purse for 2018 totals $7.2 million, with each member of the winning team earning $1,036,800.
Single-day grounds tickets are only $35 and weekly passes are $85. Single day tickets for the two most popular hospitality venues on the PGA TOUR start at $85 for Acme Oyster House and $185 for The Champions Club. Other choices of suite and specialty venue options are available by calling the Tournament Office at 504-342-3000 or online at www.zurichgolfclassic.com.