A co-sanctioned event between the PGA Tour and LPGA at Tiburon Golf Club in Naples, Florida had already announced some spectacular pairings with the likes of Rose Zhang and Sahith Theegala, Tony Finau and Nelly Korda, Rickie Fowler and Jessica Korda, and Corey Conners and Brooke Henderson is all set to team up.
The Grant Thornton Invitational is set to debut Oct. 8-10. December at Tiburon Golf Club in NaplesFlorida, as part of the challenge season.
It will be the first mixed team co-sanctioned event between the two tours since John Daly and Laura Davies won the final edition of the JCPenney Classic in 1999.
The 32-player field will consist of 16 PGA Tour and 16 LPGA players competing for a $4 million purse. The three-day event will be televised by NBC and the Golf Channel.
Grant Thornton replaced the QBE Shootout, which was founded by Greg Norman in 1989 and had been played in Naples since 2001. Last year Theegala teamed up with Tom Hoge to win the event, coming from two down in the final round to edge the Ryan Palmer and Charley Hoffman.
This week the three game formats are for Grant Thornton was exposed in a piece written by our network partners at the Naples Daily News:
Friday, December 8: Scramble format
In this round, each player hits a tee shot and then the team chooses the ball to use for the next shot. From there, both players hit their next shot from that location. This process continues until there is a hole in the ball.
Saturday 9 December: Foursome (alternate shot) format
This is the most traditional of the three days, adhering to a format consistently featured in both the Ryder Cup and Solheim Cup. Each team’s players alternate strokes with the same ball until the ball is hollow. One player will tee off on the odd holes and the other will tee off on the even holes.
Sunday 10 December: Changed four-ball format
This final round will feature a new team play format and a twist on traditional fourball. In the modified format, both players tee off and then switch balls for their second shot and play the same ball until it is holed. The partners’ lowest score is then counted as the team score for the hole.