News & Tours

Set for another new venue, CJ Cup draws strong field, with 15 of world's top 20 entered for Congaree

October 14, 2022

Rory McIlroy celebrates winning on the 18th green during the final round of the 2021 CJ Cup.

Christian Petersen

The CJ Cup has a rather interesting history for being on the PGA Tour’s schedule for such a relatively short time. It was inaugurated in October 2017 and played the first three times at the Nine Bridges Golf Club in Jeju Island, South Korea. The winners were impressive, with Justin Thomas sandwiching victories in ’17 and ’19 around Brooks Koepka’s title in ’18.

Then COVID-19 hit and like so many tournaments in Asia that were either canceled or moved, the CJ found a new home—in Las Vegas, where it was played at the exclusive Shadow Creek in ’20 and won by Jason Kokrak. It stayed in the Nevada desert for ’21, but went to another venue, The Summit Club, and Rory McIlroy triumphed, beating Collin Morikawa by one shot.

This year finds the CJ Cup at yet another new appealing spot, Congaree Golf Club in Ridgeland, S.C., and many of the top players seem to be following wherever it goes, thanks to a $10.5 million purse that ranks second on the fall schedule, behind this week’s Zozo Championship in Japan.

The CJ’s field became official on Friday, and 15 of the top 20 and six of the top 10 in the Official World Golf Ranking are entered. World No. 1 Scottie Scheffler tops the list, followed McIlroy, Jon Rahm, Thomas, Morikawa and Matt Fitzpatrick.

McIlroy will compete in his first tour event since capturing the Tour Championship and the FedEx Cup title, but he’s been a busy man. He’s played three times on the DP World Tour, notching top-five finishes each start.

Congaree, a Tom Fazio design, served as a first-time tour host in May 2021 by holding the one-off Palmetto Championship, which filled the schedule gap caused by the cancellation of the RBC Canadian Open due to the pandemic. The Palmetto was held the week before the U.S. Open at Torrey Pines and South African Garrick Higgo shot 11 under to beat six players who finished runner-up.

The club was founded with a philanthropic mission to positively impact the lives of young people through the game of golf, supporting a number of educational and vocational endeavors within the local community and internationally through the Congaree Global Golf Initiative. Conagree ranks second in Golf Digest’s Best in State: South Carolina rankings and 39th in America’s 100 Greatest list.