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Welcome

105 Global Development The international tours in China, Latin America and Canada each year produce strong graduates who move on to the Web.com Tour

from the editor

If the conclusion of the 2018-19 PGA TOUR Season is as exciting as what we’ve witnessed in recent months, fans are in for a real treat. Working on this edition of the PGA TOUR Essential Guide— which gets you caught up on the action and prepared for the rest of the year—I have been struck by the great variety of storylines that have played out so far. Winners in 2018-19 have run the gamut, including firsttimers, proven winners and some of the best golfers to ever play the game. It didn’t take long for the breakthrough theme to take hold, as Kevin Tway, son of longtime PGA TOUR member Bob Tway, won for the first time in the season-opening Safeway Open. Other new winners followed, including in consecutive weeks this spring—Max Homa at the Wells Fargo Championship and Sung Kang in the AT&T Byron Nelson. Thanks to two victories and five other top-10 finishes, veteran Matt Kuchar finds himself leading the FedExCup standings with about three months remaining in the season. THE NORTHERN TRUST and BMW Championship start the FedExCup Playoffs, with a dynamic new format at the TOUR Championship wrapping things up in late August. A highlight of the season is Rory McIlroy’s dramatic victory at THE PLAYERS Championship, contested in its new/old slot of March. Having covered golf for several decades, it’s hard to think of a big Sunday when a leaderboard was as stacked for as deep into the round as it was on THE PLAYERS Stadium Course before McIlroy emerged with the title. McIlroy’s wonderful week (detailed by Jim McCabe on page 35) was followed in short order by Tiger Woods winning his fifth Masters in stirring fashion (see Stan Awtry’s article on page 70) and, not long after that, Brooks Koepka stunning the golf world by capturing his second straight PGA Championship to go along with consecutive U.S. Open victories. (He’ll go for a third straight U.S. Open in June at Pebble Beach.) Koepka’s emergence really amplifies the kind of talent populating the PGA TOUR these days. We cover all the angles in this edition of the Essential Guide. In what has become tradition, six writers break down “Defining Moments” that have happened so far this Season (page 118). This edition of the Essential Guide is full of analysis and information, and we hope you enjoy reading it as much as we did putting it together.

Bill Fields, Editor Fairfield, Conn.

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114

Back to Basics

118

Times to Remember

124

The Climb Back

Former Stanford star Maverick McNealy returned to an old routine to prepare for an important new season on the Web.com Tour, with positive results

From drought-busting victories to inspiring moments, the first half of the 2018-19 PGA TOUR Season wasn’t short of memories

British-born Paul Casey attended Arizona State University and turned pro in 2000. He was once No. 3 in the world before a series of injuries forced him to make a gritty ascent to form

131

Innovative Fitness Facilities

136

Digging Deeper

140

World of Talent

The PGA TOUR has upgraded its Player Performance Centers to meet the growing demand of world-class athletes

ShotLink+ is the latest development for the PGA TOUR’s golf data and statistics, a major undertaking that will benefit players and spectators alike

Five individuals who have contributed greatly to golf will be inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame during U.S. Open week at Pebble Beach

2019 Tournament Overview 169

The Final Stretch: The Season’s Final Half Changes to the latter portion of the 2018-19 PGA TOUR Season schedule mean an earlier conclusion to the season with the FedExCup Playoffs ending on August 25

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Profile for Magazine

Official PGA TOUR Essential Guide to Golf: June - November 2019  

In this issue of the Official PGA TOUR Essential Guide to Golf, Rory McIlroy emerges from THE PLAYERS Championship with an important title....

Official PGA TOUR Essential Guide to Golf: June - November 2019  

In this issue of the Official PGA TOUR Essential Guide to Golf, Rory McIlroy emerges from THE PLAYERS Championship with an important title....