Sanderson Farms Championship Preview

Woody Austin defends the title at the Sanderson Farms Championship

Woody Austin defends Sandersons Farms Championship
Woody Austin defends Sanderson Farms Championship
(Image credit: Getty Images)

The regular PGA Tour travels to Mississippi this week for the Sanderson Farms Championship. 50-year-old Woody Austin defends the title at the Country Club of Jackson.

Lowdown: The regular PGA Tour travels to Mississippi this week for the Sanderson Farms Championship. 50-year-old Woody Austin defends the title at the Country Club of Jackson.

With the PGA Tour’s biggest stars in China this week for the HSBC Champions, this event gives the circuit’s lesser lights a chance to shine. The tournament has always been hosted alongside a more significant event and it has moved in this year’s schedule to sit opposite the WGC-HSBC Champions. In 2013, the tournament was played in the same week as the Open Championship.

Last year, veteran player Woody Austin made a birdie at the first extra hole to beat Cameron Beckman and Daniel Summerhays in a playoff for the title. At 49, Austin was the oldest winner on the PGA Tour since Fred Funk took the 2007 Mayakoba Classic.

Ben Martin and Robert Streb, winners of the Shriners Open and The McGladrey Classic respectively, will start this week among the favourites and they’ll be looking to accrue more points in the early stages of the race for the FedEx Cup.

Padraig Harrington and John Daly will tee it up this week, so too former World Number 1 David Duval. Other Europeans in the field include Alex Cejka of Germany and Scotland’s Russell Knox and Martin Laird.

The weather looks set relatively fair for the week so there shouldn’t be any delays to play.

Venue: Country Club of Jackson, Jackson, Mississippi Date: Nov 6-9 Course stats: par 72, 7,354 yards Purse: $4,000,000 Winner: $720,000 Defending Champion: Woody Austin (-18)

TV Coverage: Thursday 6 – Sky Sports 4 from 7pm Friday 7 – Sky Sports 4 from 7pm Saturday 8 – Sky Sports 4 from 7pm Sunday 9 – Sky Sports 4 from 7pm

Player Watch: Robert Streb – Winner of the McGladrey Classic and tied 10th in the Shriners, Streb will look to continue his good run of form this week.

Nick Watney – He’s been out of the limelight for too long and it’s high time he made a return to the winners’ circle.

Russell Knox – The Scot was third in the Shriners Open and finished the 2013-14 season strongly. He’ll be looking for a breakthrough victory here.

Key hole: 16th – A very demanding par-4 of 469 yards. Swamp waits all down the left side of the hole and it cuts in across the fairway some 80 yards short of the green. The safe tee shot is played to the right side of the fairway but this will leave a long shot in. The approach is just as testing as the drive – water waits left and a large bunker guards the putting surface to the right. A par here is a very good score.

Fergus Bisset
Contributing Editor

Fergus is Golf Monthly's resident expert on the history of the game and has written extensively on that subject. He is a golf obsessive and 1-handicapper. Growing up in the North East of Scotland, golf runs through his veins and his passion for the sport was bolstered during his time at St Andrews university studying history. He went on to earn a post graduate diploma from the London School of Journalism. Fergus has worked for Golf Monthly since 2004 and has written two books on the game; "Great Golf Debates" together with Jezz Ellwood of Golf Monthly and the history section of "The Ultimate Golf Book" together with Neil Tappin , also of Golf Monthly. 

Fergus once shanked a ball from just over Granny Clark's Wynd on the 18th of the Old Course that struck the St Andrews Golf Club and rebounded into the Valley of Sin, from where he saved par. Who says there's no golfing god?