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The 2022 CJ Cup field in South Carolina has a golf major feel to it

Aerial view of a golf course

The CJ Cup arrives in South Carolina at the Congaree Gold Club in Jasper County between Oct.20-23, and the list of players expected to attend is providing a major golf tournament vibe. 

Andre Silva, director of the tournament, made a simple and straightforward statement regarding the CJ Cup in South Carolina.

“One of the top events on the PGA Tour,” Silva commented in September during the promotion of the CJ Cup.

2022 CJ Cup: The field, thus far

A returning champion, Rory McIlroy – the world’s No.2 ranked professional golfer – gave the CJ Cup an accredited stance and further supported Silva’s comment. The latest reveal of players arriving at Congaree also supports his stance.

Yes, the CJ Cup looks more like a major championship week by week as the announcements of top-ranked players attending the tournament continue rolling in.

In addition to McIlroy, the defending CJ Cup champion who boasts four major titles, multiple major winners such as Justin Thomas, Collin Morikawa, and Jordan Spieth have committed to the South Carolina-based competition. Not forgetting the 2021 U.S. Open winner Jon Rahm, who was already on the entry list.

Mix in Presidents Cup winners Max Homa and Si Woo Kim, plus Sungjae Im, returning to action following the most in-form season of his career, up-and-coming Tom Kim, and sponsor invitees Rickie Fowler and Jason Day – the field is looking elite, to say the least.  

McIlroy will enter the tournament as the defending champion. Although Carolina sports betting is currently restricted, this won’t prevent avid sports bettors from backing the four-time major winner in their upcoming CJ Cup wagers. McIlroy collected the 2021 CJ Cup at The Summit Club in what became his 20th career PGA Tour title, and he went on to collect another two during the 2021/22 season, including a season-ending TOUR Championship where he broke records to lift a third FedExCup title.

Notably, McIlroy was the fifth favorite at the sportsbooks to win the 2021 CJ Cup (18-1) but still managed to defy the odds and outperform Dustin Johnson, Xander Schauffele, Justin Thomas, and Collin Morikawa – the four players priced lower than him in the betting odds.

McIlroy will again make his season debut at the CJ Cup this year, but he’ll be faced with a new set of variables when playing in South Carolina at the Congaree Golf Club for the first time.

“This will be my first time beginning a PGA TOUR season with a title defense, so I will enjoy drawing back on positive memories from 2021,” McIlroy said. “I am really looking forward to seeing what Congaree is all about. From the design of the golf course to the overall player experience, everything I have heard about it from those who played the tournament in 2021 was overwhelmingly positive.”

McIlroy, however, won’t be the only star on the course. Four of the top nine players from the World Golf Rankings – McIlroy (2), Rahm (6), Thomas (8), and Morikawa (9) – have made their commitment to competition in South Carolina. Scottie Scheffler (1) and Xander Schauffele are probable but not yet confirmed.

Morikawa, who led with a 2-1 record when competing for the successful U.S. Presidents Cup team, was the runner-up to McIlroy in the 2021 CJ Cup and will fancy his chances of dethroning the world’s No.2.

Thomas, a two-time major champion, was 4-1 in the Presidents Cup. From his 15 Tour wins, he owns two CJ Cup titles and will want to add a third to his trophy cabinet.

Making his 2022/23 season debut, the world’s No.6 ranked Rahm will arrive in SC for his career's second CJ Cup appearance. In six successive PGA Tour seasons, Rahm has won at least one competition.

The CJ Cup location change and entry list

The CJ Cup debuted in Korea in 2017, but COVID-19 restrictions moved the competition to Las Vegas for the past two years. As pandemic protocols remain uncertain in Korea, officials announced the tournament would take place in South Carolina for the 2022 edition.

A 78-player, no 36-hole cut field will present the world’s top 60 professionals from the 2021/22 FedEx Cup points list and sponsor exemptions. As a part of the CJ Group’s vision to support professional golf in Korea, the rest of the field will be made up of the Korea Professional Golfers’ Association (KPGA), including the top three ranked players of Korean nationality from the Official World Golf Rankings.