Sergio Garcia defends AT&T Byron Nelson

A strong field has assembled at the TPC Four Seasons at Las Colinas

Sergio Garcia defends AT&T Byron Nelson
Sergio Garcia defends AT&T Byron Nelson
(Image credit: Getty Images)

The PGA Tour is in Texas this week for the AT&T Byron Nelson. Masters champion Sergio Garcia defends his title against a field including four of the World’s top six players.

Sergio Garcia is defending champion in the AT&T Byron Nelson but he’ll face strong competition from a field that includes World Number 1 Dustin Johnson, World Number 3 Jason Day and hometown favourite Jordan Spieth.

Garcia won this event back in 2004 as well as last season. If he were to win again this year, he’d join Tom Watson and Sam Snead as the only players to triumph three times in the event (Watson managed four victories.)

Jordan Spieth seeks hometown success but his form in this event hasn’t been great in the past. His best result is a tie for 16th which he recorded as a teenager back in 2010.

The TPC Four Seasons course at Las Colinas was originally designed by Jay Morrish back in 1982 but, after the 2007 tournament, D.A Weibring and Steve Wolfard oversaw a major redesign of the layout – reshaping greens and bringing more water into play. The layout now poses a more strategic test and demands creativity and solid shot-making. This will be the 35th year that this course has been used for this event but it will move as of 2018.

This tournament began life back in 1926 as the Dallas Open. It was renamed as the Byron Nelson Classic in 1968. Since then, Jack Nicklaus, Tom Watson, Payne Stewart, Ernie Els, Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods have been champions.

Last year Sergio Garcia came through a playoff against Brooks Koepka. The Spaniard put two balls in the water on the back nine in regulation play but was still able to catch Koepka who then put a ball in the water from the tee on the first playoff hole.

Sergio swing sequence:

The weather forecast for the week is unsettled. Winds look likely to be gusting and thunderstorms are a distinct possibility.

Venue: TPC Four Seasons Resort at Las Colinas, Irving, Texas Date: May 18-21 Course stats: par 70, 7,166 yards Purse: $7,500,000 Winner: $1,314,000 Defending Champion: Sergio Garcia (-15)

TV Coverage: Thursday 18 – Sky Sports 4 from 9pm Friday 19 – Sky Sports 4 from 9pm Saturday 20 – Sky Sports 4 from 6pm Sunday 21 – Sky Sports 4 from 6.30pm

Player watch:

Brooks Koepka – He lost in a playoff to Sergio last year and he comes into this year’s event on good form, he has recorded five straight top-20 finishes on the PGA Tour.

Charley Hoffman – In his last three starts in the Byron Nelson he has been tied 8th, tied 2nd and tied 12th. He’s been playing well this season and should feed off good memories here.

Dustin Johnson – The World Number 1 has a great record in this event that includes four top-10 finishes.

Key hole: 16th. A par-5 of 546 yards, this is a definite birdie hole. It always ranks as one of the easiest holes on the course and, if a player fails to make birdie here down the stretch, he’ll feel as though he’s dropped a shot.

Fergus Bisset
Contributing Editor

Fergus 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 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?