The top eight qualifiers on both the U.S. and International teams are locked in with the world’s best golfers headed to Melbourne for the 2019 Presidents Cup.

U.S. Team captain Tiger Woods will lead a stellar group that are all inside the top 20 in the Official World Golf Ranking and have a combined 11 PGA TOUR victories this season.

Meanwhile, Ernie Els will lead the International Team seeking to win the Presidents Cup for just the second time, led by Australians Marc Leishman and Adam Scott along with Cameron Smith, who will make his Presidents Cup debut and experienced South African Louis Oosthuizen.

The Presidents Cup will return to Melbourne and The Royal Melbourne Golf Club for just the third time, from December 9-15, 2019. The venue is the site of the International team’s only win in 1998.

Woods said he is excited by the make up of his top eight.

“This is the core of the team.  These guys have earned it.  They’ve proven that they belong on the team,” Woods said.

“You’ve got some veterans, whether it’s Webby, Kuch or Dustin, who have been part of the teams for a very long time, and we have some newcomers.  We have a nice mix.”

“It’s a younger team, and that’s what we want to see.  We want to see a little turnover and get the younger guys playing on these teams because they’re going to be a part of it for a very long time going forward. Really, I can’t wait to get some of these young guys down to Royal Melbourne to experience golf in the sandbelt region and get to experience how much the fans love and appreciate sports and golf in that area of the world.”

Ernie Els will lead a group that includes four players with a combined 17 previous appearances and four others who will be playing for the first time.

Captain Els said: “This is as good as I could have asked for. I’ve got guys who have played in the Presidents Cup many times previously and I’ve got guys who are rookies. The guys who are pillars of our team have really stepped up to take their places in this team. I’m really impressed with how they’ve conducted themselves and played into the team.

“For the top eight, I think the one-year qualifying cycle has worked well. The guys knew they had to play well this season and they showed it. For instance, Adam Scott played himself right into this team. He was nowhere near when qualifying started and he’s played great since we started. Same with Louis Oosthuizen who stepped it up. They obviously had a plan of trying to make this team.”

 

U.S. Team

U.S. Team Notes:

  • Of the eight players, five are in their 20s with Xander Schauffele, Bryson DeChambeau and Patrick Cantlay qualifying for the first time.
  • Making his fifth Presidents Cup appearance, Matt Kuchar is the most experienced player in the top eight. Kuchar, Webb Simpson and Dustin Johnson each played on the 2011 U.S. Team that was victorious at The Royal Melbourne Golf Club.
  • Brooks Koepka leads the U.S. Team as the No. 1-ranked player in the world and has three wins this season on the PGA TOUR. Koepka, Johnson, Kuchar and Justin Thomas were all members of the victorious U.S. Team in 2017.
  • Thomas qualifies on the heels of his victory at the BMW Championship on Sunday. The win moved Thomas to No. 2 in the standings.

NO. 1 – BROOKS KOEPKA
Age: 29
PGA TOUR Wins: 7
Presidents Cup: 1 (2017) / 2-2-0 record

2018/19 Highlights:
Reigning PGA TOUR Player of the Year has three wins at the CJ CUP @ NINE BRIDGES, the PGA Championship and the WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational. He also has three runner-up finishes including the Masters Tournament and the U.S. Open. Ranks 1st in Par 4 scoring average on the PGA TOUR this season.

Notable
Has won four majors and a World Golf Championships event. Has been No. 1 in the Official World Golf Ranking for a total of 23 weeks including the last 14 consecutive weeks.

Brooks Koepka Quotes:
“It’s always fun to represent the United States. I think it’s a special honor and something we don’t take lightly. But at the same time, I’ve never been to Australia. So, it’s been on my bucket list for a long time to get down there and go play golf and go see Australia. So, to get down there at the end of the year in December will be a special treat and to do it with guys that I’ve become really close with over the last couple years, three years.”

“To be able to be a part of these teams, it’s so much fun. I don’t think people realize what goes on behind closed doors. And how much fun it is for us and you build those relationships with these guys, and we’re gonna have them rest of our lives.”

Tiger Woods Quote:
“It’s hard not to say that he’s (Brooks) had one of the most incredible major championship runs of all time.  What he’s done the last couple years has been truly remarkable in major championships.  He’s beaten all of us, and what he brings to the team is that toughness that we want, that fire.  But he’s also that calmness, too, that calming factor.”

NO. 2 – JUSTIN THOMAS
Age: 26
PGA TOUR Wins: 9
Presidents Cup: 3 (2017) / 3-1-1 record

2018/19 Highlights:
Saved the best for last as his first victory of the season came in the final week of qualification on Sunday at the BMW Championship. The win marked his sixth top-10 finish of the season.

Notable
Only player on the team with one major, one WGC and a FedExCup. Ranks 1st in birdie average on the PGA TOUR this season.

Justin Thomas Quote:
“I’m very excited. I’ve never been to Australia before, so to just go to Australia, is exciting in itself. I’ve had a blast with my two team events, obviously, one a little bit more fun than the other getting it done at the Presidents Cup at Liberty National two years ago. So hoping to recreate some of those memories, but to be able to play for Tiger and have a very, very solid deep team again. It’s something that we’re all looking forward to and excited for.”

Tiger Woods Quote:
“What I saw as a vice captain at Liberty National, the fire, his first Cup, his first team event, and he was so just enthusiastic, and what a great team guy.  Incredible in the locker room.  Everybody loves him, and he’s got that little fiery personality that you want.”

NO. 3 – DUSTIN JOHNSON
Age: 35
OWGR: 2nd (2nd on current ranking)
PGA TOUR Wins: 20
Presidents Cup: 3 (2011, 2015, 2017) / 8-4-2 record

2018/19 Highlights:
Won the WGC-Mexico Championship as part of seven top-10 finishes

Notable
Played in Melbourne in 2011 where he was paired with Tiger Woods for three matches. One major championship win, five career WGC victories. Has at least one victory in each of the last 12 consecutive seasons on the PGA TOUR.

Tiger Woods Quote:
DJ has been on the team for a long time.  I played with him in 2011 down there in Melbourne, and what an incredible player and incredible partner.  He brings experience, also a lot of game, and so it’ll be fun to have him on the team again and see him out there playing because what he did down in Melbourne last time, he played really solidly.  Looking forward to that again.”

NO. 4 – PATRICK CANTLAY
Age: 27
PGA TOUR Wins: 2
Presidents Cup: Making first appearance

2018/19 Highlights: 
Won at the Memorial Tournament and also finished runner-up at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open as well as the BMW Championship this season.  Cantlay also finished third at the RBC Heritage and the PGA Championship.

Tiger Woods Quote:
Patrick has never been a part of the teams before, so this will be new for him.  It will be exciting to have him on the team.  He’s kind of quiet, quiet and kind of reserved, but we’ve gotten to know him — I’ve gotten to know him a little bit from being on the training tables next to him, and what a great kid.  When we go down to Melbourne, it’s a golf course which you have to putt well, and he’s one of the best putters we’ve got.”

NO. 5 – XANDER SCHAUFFELE
Age: 25
PGA TOUR Wins: 4
Presidents Cup: Making first appearance

2019 Highlights:
Victories at the WGC-HSBC Champions and the Sentry Tournament of Champions to go along with a runner-up at the Masters and a T3 at the U.S. Open.

Tiger Woods Quote:
Xander is new.  He’s never been on any of the teams before, so this will be new for him.  But Xander, he’s just like Mr. Consistent.  He just doesn’t do anything wrong.  He’s just solid.  We want guys like him on the team.”

NO. 6 – WEBB SIMPSON
Age: 34
PGA TOUR Wins: 5
Presidents Cup: 2 (2011, 2013) / 5-3-2 record

2018/19 Highlights:
Three runner-up finishes (RBC Canadian Open, WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational, Wyndham Championship)

Notable:
Played in 2011 at Royal Melbourne where he and Bubba Watson were the first team out in each of the first three rounds collecting three points for his team. Finished the event with a 3-2-0 record. Winner of the 2012 U.S. Open and the 2018 PLAYERS Championship

Webb Simpson Quote:
“To think that growing up playing golf that one day I could play for Tiger Woods as a captain is something I would only dream about. To do it and play on a Presidents Cup team is a great honor, but more special knowing it’s been six years since my last Presidents Cup team. I am really looking forward to it.”

Tiger Woods Quote:
Webby was down there with us in 2011, as well, and what an enthusiastic personality.  It’s infectious.  You know, I was on teams with him for a number of years, and just great in the team room.  I mean, he’s one of the guys that you want to have with that energy being part of a team like this.”

NO. 7 – MATT KUCHAR
Age: 41
PGA TOUR Wins: 9
Presidents Cup: 4 (2011, 2013, 2015, 2017) / 6-8-2 record

2018/19 Highlights:
Has two wins (Mayakoba and Sony Open) and two runner-up finishes this year.

Notable:
Played in Melbourne in 2011. Has won a PLAYERS Championship and a World Golf Championships. Will reach the season-ending TOUR Championship for the ninth time in his last 10 season on the PGA TOUR.

Matt Kuchar Quote:
“Fantastic memories of playing in Australia. Royal Melbourne is one of the best golf courses in the world. All of the courses in the Sandbelt region are incredible. To get to play with Tiger as our captain is a very cool opportunities and something I’m truly looking forward to. These team events are some of the best memories we have as players.”

Tiger Woods Quote:
Kuch, I played with him in 2011 down there in Melbourne.  Kuch is just Kuch.  He’s a little bit off at times, and we love that about him because he keeps us loose.  There are times when, yeah, the team can get a little tight, but Kuch will have one liners here and there, have stories and make all of us laugh.  You want that type of person in the team room.

NO. 8 – BRYSON DECHAMBEAU
Age: 25
PGA TOUR Wins: 5
Presidents Cup: Making first appearance

2018/19 Highlights:
Won the Shriners Hospitals for Children in the fall following back-to-back wins in the Playoffs in 2018.

Tiger Woods Quote:
Yeah, Bryson, this will be new for him.  You know, I got a chance to play with him on the Ryder Cup team last year, and what an incredible player.  I mean, he does things differently.  He does it his own way.  But he does it really well and really efficiently. We want young guys like this on the team because he’s going to be part of these teams for a very long time.”

 

International Team 

International Team Notes:

  • The top four players in the standings (Marc Leishman, Louis Oosthuizen, Adam Scott and Hideki Matsuyama) have a combined 17 appearances in the Presidents Cup and are flanked by four newcomers to the event in Abraham Ancer, Haotong Li, Cameron Smith and C.T. Pan.
  • Australia has the most players qualified with Leishman, Scott and Smith.
  • Li, Ancer and Pan are the first players from mainland China, Mexico and Chinese Taipei, respectively, to qualify for the International Team.
  • Scott has the most experience of any qualified player for both the International and U.S. Teams having played in the Presidents Cup on eight previous occasions. Scott is the only player on the International Team who played in the event in 2011 when it was held at The Royal Melbourne Golf Club.

 

NO. 1 – MARC LEISHMAN
Age: 35
PGA TOUR Wins: 4
Presidents Cup: 3 (2013, 2015, 2017) 3-7-3 record

2018/19 Highlights:
Won the 2018 CIMB Classic in Malaysia. Finished T2 in ISPS HANDA Melbourne World Cup of Golf with Cameron Smith and posted five other top-10s including a third-place finish at WGC-FedExSt Jude Invitational.

Notable:
Was Rookie of the Year on PGA TOUR in 2009. First Australian to win the award.

Marc Leishman Quote:
“It’s great to be on the team again. It’ll be my fourth in a row which means I’m doing something right. Definitely excited for it and hopefully we can play some really good golf there and give the Americans a run for their money. I hope the fans will support us like how the American fans support their team when it’s played in the U.S. It’s pretty important that it happens. It’s important that we play well from the get-go to give them something to cheer about. We need to get off to a good start and get our fans to support the team.”

Ernie Els Quote:
Marc has been the most consistent player on our team. Being Australian, it’s going to be a big week for him. I think he can take a leading role. He’s played quite a few of these now and he can give a lot of knowledge to my players. He’s definitely going to be one of my leader group guys.”

NO. 2 – HIDEKI MATSUYAMA
Age: 27
PGA TOUR Wins: 5
Presidents Cup: 3 (2013, 2015, 2017) / 4-6-3 record

2018/19 Highlights:
Six top-10s including T3’s at the BMW Championship and the Farmers Insurance Open.

Notable:
Eight-time winner on Japan Golf Tour. First Asian to win a World Golf Championships event at 2016 WGC-HSBC Champions in China. Won the 2017 WGC-FedEx St Jude Invitational.

Hideki Matsuyama Quote:
“I’ve had the opportunity to play with Ernie previously, so I would really love to contribute to the team. I’m the only Japanese player on the International team and I will try my best to represent the country of Japan. The U.S. Team is very strong and I think teamwork will be extremely important. For us to do well, I will aim to do my best and contribute to the team.

Ernie Els Quote:
“Hideki is a great and talented player. This will be his fourth Presidents Cup and he’s going to be very familiar with what it’s all about. He’s not been on a winning team, we came close in Muirfield and Korea so I can see him being very keen to win. He’s had a few close run-ins with the U.S. Team, so he’ll be ready to fight. His character is that he’s a winner. He’s won some of the big events that we have out here. He takes it very seriously.

NO. 3 – LOUIS OOSTHUIZEN
Age: 36
PGA TOUR Wins: 1
European Tour Wins: 9
Presidents Cup: 3 (2013, 2015, 2017) / 7-5-3 record

2018/19 Highlights:
Claimed victory at the South African Open in late 2018 to end a 33-month winless run. Produced five top-10s on the PGA TOUR including a T2 at the Valspar Championship.

Notable:
Established a formidable partnership with Branden Grace in 2015 and won all four of their matches together. Won the 2010 The Open Championship. He is also one of seven players to finish runner-up in all four majors.

Louis Oosthuizen Quote:
“I’m excited. Ernie has really put a lot of work into it and doing things a little different. Knowing Ernie, living close to him and being a good friend, it makes it more special to be on this team. Everyone has been excited over the last few months due to what Ernie is already doing for us. It’s great to see Abraham Ancer get into the team, he’s been playing well for a long time, It’s good to see youngsters and new faces in the top-8.”

Ernie Els Quote:
Louis is just so solid as a player. He’s a team guy and I can’t ask for a better player to be on this team. He’s got a great sense of humor and he can keep the guys loose. Everything you can think of in a team environment, that’s Louis. He loves the competition. He loves getting up for it and he’s great in a team format.“

NO. 4 – ADAM SCOTT
Age: 39
PGA TOUR Wins: 13
Presidents Cup: 8 (2003, 2005, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2013, 2015, 2017) / 14-20-5 record

2018/19 Highlights:
Eight top-10s including runner-up finishes at the Farmers Insurance Open and Memorial Tournament.

Notable
Has won the PLAYERS Championship, TOUR Championship, Masters Tournament and two WGCs. A former world No. 1 who has the most experience of any of the qualified players for either team.

Adam Scott Quote:
Of course, the bigger goal will be (winning) the Presidents Cup. Ernie has made his intentions very clear – certainly to me – how much he wants to improve our chances as a team and the work he’s going to put in. For me, considering Ernie is really a great friend and mentor of mine, I really want to be part of his team.”

Ernie Els Quote:
I remember playing with Adam in his very first one in 2003 and he’s been on every team since then. He’s really stepped up to the plate to make this team. He was not in the team when qualifying started but he’s played himself into the team. He’s very vocal and very much up for it. With all the new stuff that I’ve brought into the team, he’s really bought into it and it gives me confidence to keep steering the team ahead. He’s the pillar of this team.”

NO. 5 – ABRAHAM ANCER
Age: 28
PGA TOUR Wins: 0
Presidents Cup: Making first appearance

2018/19 Highlights:
Four top-10s including a career best 2nd place at THE NORTHERN TRUST.

Notable:
Won the Australian Open in 2018 and finished T2 at 2018 ISPS HANDA Melbourne World Cup of Golf with Roberto Diaz.

Abraham Ancer Quote:
That was one of my main, main goals for this year. That is something going to be an experience that I will never, never forget. I think the first Mexican that’s going to play in the Presidents Cup; that’s huge. I mean, I get a little bit of goosebumps right now just talking about it. Just for Mexican golf, I think it’s big. Obviously for me, being selfish, it’s awesome and it’s going to be a lot of fun, but in the bigger picture for Mexican golf, it’s awesome.”

Ernie Els Quote:
“Winning the Aussie Open, he understands the Australian culture of golf. I know how much he wants it. A real steely player. I played  with him at The Open a few weeks ago, he drove it well and he’s a really good, solid player all  round and someone I’d love to have on the team.”

NO. 6 – HAOTONG LI
Age: 23
OWGR: 48th  (5th on current ranking)
PGA TOUR Wins: 0
Presidents Cup: Making first appearance

2018/19 Highlights:
Three top-20s in the WGCs, including T9 at WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play where he beat Brooks Koepka and Alex Noren in the preliminary round.

Notable:
Holds two wins on the European Tour, including a win at the Dubai Desert Classic in 2018 where he defeated Rory McIlroy in a head-to-head duel in the final round.

Haotong Li Quote:
Ernie is a very special person to me personally. Definitely since 2017 The Open, I played with him and finished third. He gave me a lot of experience and I learned a lot great things from him. It’s my great honor to be part of the team. Hopefully I can get some points, especially against Tiger, against the best golfer in the world. I’m very excited to be there. To be fair, our team is not as strong as the U.S. team. So just want to play our best and hopefully beat them.”

Ernie Els Quote:
Haotong is a strong player and he’s got a great game. I’ve played with him many times and at The Open two years ago where he nearly won with a 63 in the final round. He’s got all the qualities of a world-class player and maybe become No. 1 in the world one day. He’s that kind of talent. I like his style of play and he’ll be great in the team environment. He’s quite a lively character and he’s quite outspoken in a confident way. He’ll carry his weight in the team room very well. Good putter, and on his day, he can go as low as anybody. I am really excited to have him on the team.”

NO. 7 – C.T. PAN
Age: 27
OWGR: 51st (8th on current ranking)
PGA TOUR Wins: 1
Presidents Cup: Making first appearance

2018/19 Highlights:
Won at the RBC Heritage for his first PGA TOUR win in April. Followed up with a T3 at Charles Schwab Challenge.

Notable:
A former World No.1 amateur golfer. Finished T5 in the 2014 Asia Pacific Amateur Championship held at Royal Melbourne Golf Club.

C.T. Pan Quote:
“It’s great to make the Presidents Cup team. I didn’t play well the last few days but to be able to lock down the spot means a lot to me. I’m going to make sure make sure my schedule for the next few months will get me ready for the Presidents Cup and help the team and Captain Els.”

Ernie Els Quote:
CT is a newcomer and we’ll do our homework to get him comfortable in the team environment and get him the right partner. Overall, he’s got a very sound game. He manages his game very well and he’s a good putter. As a rookie and a person from Chinese Taipei, it’s a big deal.”

NO. 8 CAMERON SMITH
Age: 25
OWGR: 45th (7th on current ranking)
PGA TOUR Wins: 1
Presidents Cup: Making first appearance

2018/19 Highlights:
Three top-10s including a best of 6th at WGC-Mexico Championship.

Notable:
His lone win on PGA TOUR came at the 2017 Zurich Classic of New Orleans which he partnered Jonas Blixt. Winner of Australian PGA Championship in 2017-18. Finished T2 with Marc Leishman at 2018 ISPS HANDA Melbourne World Cup of Golf.

Ernie Els Quote:
“Cameron is very solid. With Marc Leishman last year, they played good at the World Cup of Golf. He’s very familiar with the golf course and surroundings and I’m looking for him and the other Australians to have a good week. If they can, the fans will be really involved. Cameron is kind of the young star in Australia now and he can really make a difference for us. They will be one of the pairings which will come up automatically not only through the data that will show but through their World Cup performance which was phenomenal. We will look at them as a potential pairing, absolutely.”

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