The Norman Transcript

Sports

July 3, 2014

Course of the future:Harding Park

SAN FRANCISCO — The southwest corridor of San Francisco is going to get all the golf it can handle over the next decade.

TPC Harding Park will host the Match Play Championship in 2015, the PGA Championship in 2020 and the Presidents Cup in 2025. The announcement was made Wednesday by PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem, PGA of America President Ted Bishop and San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee at a swanky City Hall news conference.

Speaking on the second-floor balcony outside the mayor’s office to a crowd that included about 100 leaders and golf officials, Finchem said the coordination between the PGA Tour and PGA of America to stage all three events at the same venue is unprecedented. He said he hopes similar collaboration can be done in the future to benefit both organizations and their fans.

“Today is an announcement of a lot of firsts,” Finchem said.

The trio of tournaments adds to an aggressive schedule in the area.

The Swinging Skirts LPGA Classic, which was held on the last weekend of April this year, is set to return to Lake Merced just down the road in Daly City in 2015. And the inaugural U.S. Amateur Four-Ball Championship is scheduled from April 30 to May 6 at The Olympic Club, where the U.S. Open was last held in 2012.

Organizers are counting on the sports-saturated Bay Area market — loaded with corporate dollars from San Francisco to Silicon Valley — to provide support behind the ropes and on sponsorship banners.

The PGA Tour’s commitment to hold the Match Play at Harding Park is only for one year. The tournament had typically been held in February the past eight years at Dove Mountain outside Tucson, Arizona. But the PGA Tour’s contract with title sponsor Accenture ended after this year’s event, leaving the event’s future uncertain.

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