“The Match” Primer: Tiger & Rory vs Thomas & Spieth

The Match: Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, Jordan Spieth and Justin Thomas
Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, Jordan Spieth and Justin Thomas star in the latest edition of The Match.

In what has become an annual event on the golfing calendar, TNT’s The Match is back for round No. 2 in 2022, as four of the best-known golfers in the world tee off in an exhibition to raise money for charity, specifically Hurricane Ian relief efforts.

After the most recent edition of The Match in June featured four NFL quarterbacks and no golfers, this iteration of The Match is all PGA Tour golfers, who just so happen to be four of the most recognizable names in the game: Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, Jordan Spieth and Justin Thomas.

The Match dates back to 2018 when Woods took on Phil Mickelson, two of golf’s biggest rivals, in a head-to-head matchup. Then, during the pandemic, more of these exhibitions took place, including Woods and Mickelson again facing off, joined by another pair of iconic rivals: Tom Brady and Peyton Manning.

Aaron Rodgers and Bryson DeChambeau Win Capital One The Match
Aaron Rodgers (L) and Bryson DeChambeau celebrate after winning Capital One’s The Match at The Reserve at Moonlight Basin on July 6, 2021 in Big Sky, Montana. (Photo by Stacy Revere for The Match via Getty Images )

Other editions of The Match have featured other famous golfers and athletes, including Bryson DeChambeau, Brooks Koepka, Aaron Rodgers, Patrick Mahomes and Josh Allen, among others.

Since 2020, there has been a fall edition of The Match, typically right after the Thanksgiving holiday. This year’s edition, however, is the first time that the event is taking place at night, under the lights.

Here is everything that you need to know about The Match.


Tournament: The Match: Tiger Woods vs Phil Mickelson
Dates: Dec. 10, 2022
Where: Belleair, Fla
Course: Pelican Golf Club
Architect: Tom Fazio
Format: 12-holes, team best ball
Time: 6:00 pm EST


The Pelican Golf Club plays host to the LPGA, annually, and is considered one of the circuit’s top tracks.

Originally a Donald Ross design in 1925, and known as the Belleview Biltmore Golf Club, the course and hotel were shuttered in the early part of the 2000s decade. For marketing purposes, the Pelican is referred to as “Ross-inspired.”

The Match will be contested using a 12-hole routing, played in the following order: 1, 2, 3, 8, 9, 10, 14, 12, 15, 16, 17, 18.

Holes & Yards

Match Hole – Card Hole No. (Par, Yards)
1st – 1st (4, 328)
2nd – 2nd (4, 481)
3rd – 3rd (3, 193)
4th – 8th (4, 441)
5th – 9th (3, 151)
6th – 10th (4, 489)
7th – 14th (5, 523)
8th – 12th (3, 177)
9th – 15th (3, 217)
10th – 16th (4, 423)
11th – 17th (4,375)
12th – 18th (4, 473)

The Match: The Golfers

Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy The 2022 OPEN Championship
Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy on the 18th fairway during the Celebration of Champions prior to The 150th Open at St Andrews Old Course on July 11, 2022 in St Andrews, Scotland. (Photo by Oisin Keniry for R&A via Getty Images)

Tiger Woods: The 15-time major winner is one of the greatest golfers to ever play. Despite injuries impacting his ability to play as frequently in recent years, he remains the most recognizable and most popular golfer in the world. Speaking of injuries, Woods did pull out of the Hero World Challenge, taking place from December 1-4, with a foot injury. This is Tiger’s third appearance in The Match; he has won one and lost one.

Rory McIlroy: The four-time major champion will be paired with Woods. McIlroy is coming off a spectacular 2022 season that saw him win the FedEx Cup and reclaim the world No. 1 ranking. This is McIlroy’s first time participating in The Match; he is the first non-American to participate in the event.

Going up against the team of Woods and McIlroy are well-known friends Jordan Spieth and Justin Thomas, neither of whom has ever competed in The Match.

Jordan Spieth talks with Justin Thomas
Jordan Spieth talks with Justin Thomas during a practice round ahead of the Sony Open at Waialae CC on Jan 8, 2019 in Honolulu, Hawaii. Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Jordan Spieth: The Texan burst onto the scene in 2015 when he won The Masters, the U.S. Open and finished second at the PGA Championship and third at the Open Championship. In 2017, he went on to win his third major at the British Open. And while he’s only won twice since 2017, he remains one of the most popular golfers in the world.

Justin Thomas: The most recent major winner of the group, winning the 2022 PGA Championship, his second major of his career (the previous also being a PGA Championship). Thomas has always flown a bit more under the radar than his three peers in The Match but has been the most consistent, never falling outside the world top 10 since 2017.


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