AKRON, Ohio - Tiger Woods, two-time defending champion and the No. 1 player in the world, will lead an outstanding field at next week's World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational, Aug. 2-5. Woods, who will be looking for his 14th individual World Golf Championships title and sixth Bridgestone Invitational, officially added his name to the Bridgestone Invitational commitment list today, completing a field that includes all but one of the 84 players who qualified for the event (Fred Couples will not be competing).
Woods will be joined by fellow major championship winners Jim Furyk, No. 2 on the Official World Golf Ranking, and Phil Mickelson, ranked No. 3. Furyk is looking to improve on an already impressive record at Firestone Country Club; in eight starts, he has posted six top-10 finishes, including a memorable runner-up finish to Woods in 2001, where the two battled in a seven-hole, sudden-death playoff into near darkness. Furyk is looking for his first win of the 2007 season.
Mickelson, who won AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am and THE PLAYERS Championship earlier this year, has posted just one top-10 finish in his eight Bridgestone Invitational starts - a second-place to Woods at the 1999 event. That year, Mickelson carded a final-round 65 to miss forcing a playoff with Woods by just one shot.
The Bridgestone Invitational field certainly puts the "World" in World Golf Championships. In total, players from 20 different countries will compete in the $8 million event, with the United States leading the way with 34 players. Australia has 10 players competing, followed by England and South Africa, with seven each. Argentina (one player in the field), Canada (2), China (1), Denmark (1), Fiji (1), France (2), India (1), Ireland (2), Japan (1), New Zealand (1), Northern Ireland (1), Scotland (1), South Korea (2) Spain (3), Sweden (4) and Thailand (1) are the other countries represented.
The top-50 players from the Official World Golf Ranking (including ties) as of Monday, July 30, will also be eligible to compete in the Bridgestone Invitational. Those currently on the outside looking in include: Andres Romero, who moved from 114th in the world to 51st after finishing third at the British Open; Charl Schwartzel (No. 52); Miguel Angel Jimenez (No. 53); Lucas Glover (No. 54); Bradley Dredge (No. 56); and Ryan Moore (No. 58).
In addition, the winner of this week's Canadian Open on the PGA TOUR and The Deutsche Bank Players' Championship of Europe on the European Tour will be eligible for the Bridgestone Invitational.
Fans can still purchase tickets to the Bridgestone Invitational and witness the best players in the world competing on a historic and challenging course. To purchase, call 1-877-942-4849 or visit www.worldgolfchampionships.com. Children under 12 are admitted free when accompanied by a ticketed adult), and children ages 13-18 are only $15 at the gate. Parking for the Bridgestone Invitational is free.