PGA Tour

Genesis Invitational, headlined by Tiger Woods, has an impressively loaded field. Here's who else is playing

February 11, 2023

Oisin Keniry/R&A

The PGA Tour’s goal when creating its series of designated events was to have its top players compete against each other more often—and reward them for doing so by paying significant prize money payouts. Judging from the list of participants released on Friday for next week’s Genesis Invitational, it is mission accomplished.

All told, 23 of the top 25 players on the Official World Ranking are scheduled to compete in the 134-player field at Riviera Country Club outside Los Angeles. The only two missing from the $20 million event are Cam Smith and defending champion Joaquin Niemann, who are both ineligible as LIV golfers.

Of course, the most notable player in the field is the one ranked 1,283rd in the OWGR. Tiger Woods surprised the golf world on Friday when he announced via social media that he was returning to play for the first time since last summer’s Open Championship. His appearance at the Genesis will mark Woods’ first start in a PGA Tour event that wasn’t a major since the Zozo Championship at Sherwood Country Club in October 2020.

Woods is also the host of the tournament at Riviera, where he’s played 14 times during his career but never won. His last appearance in the event came in 2020, when he finished 68th.

While the field is loaded with top-ranked players—Rory McIlroy, Jon Rahm, Scottie Scheffler, Patrick Cantlay, Justin Thomas, etc.—there are also spots reserved for some other intriguing stories. Marcus Byrd, a member of the APGA Tour, is competing as this year’s recipient of the Charlie Sifford Memorial Exemption given to a minority golfer. And the tournament is also holding open a spot to the college golfer who wins Monday’s Collegiate Showcase. Past winners included Zalatoris in 2015 while at Wake Forest, Scheffler in 2018 at Texas and Sahith Theegala, in 2017 while at Pepperdine.