Day wins Japan Skins as Woods emerges unscathed
Jason Day won the Japan Skins game on Monday but the real winner was probably Tiger Woods, who reported a clean bill of health in his first competitive round since undergoing knee surgery two months ago.
Day, winner of the 2015 PGA Championship, said:
“The event was great. I think the back and forth was nice. Hopefully the fans all around the world enjoyed the banter.
"Overall, it was a brilliant afternoon / evening. I think it’s the first time I’ve ever finished under lights so that was exciting. I haven’t actually watched a skins game before.
"Apparently Tiger has played six skins matches himself, and he hasn’t won one yet so I am one up on him which is good! This is nice, it was clean, within the game and we had fun out there. Hopefully I get the invite back next year.”
Alex Kaplan, President & General Manager Discovery Golf, commented:
“We really wanted to bring something fresh and fun and I think it’s been a fantastic event with really memorable moments for everyone. We’re really excited by the response from fans and the players and look forward to making it even bigger and better next time.”
- Jason Day (AUS) Skins won 8, $210,000 USD
- Tiger Woods (USA) Skins won 5, $60,000
- Rory McIlroy (IRL) Skins won 4, $60,000
- Hideki Matusyama (JAP) Skins won 1, $20,000
HOW TO WATCH
WOODS EMERGES UNSCATHED
The competition it also afforded Woods a chance to assess his condition after having his left knee surgically repaired for the fifth time.
"I did not play well at the beginning," Woods said.
"I hit a lot of bad shots. It took five or six holes to find it but once I found my feet it came around quickly."
Woods has only this week's PGA Tour event, the Zozo Championship starting here on Thursday, to assess his form before finalising his team for December's Presidents Cup in Australia.
He will captain the American team, and can choose himself as one of the four wildcard selections he must make in a fortnight.
"I've got full range of motion and have no pain squatting," said Woods.
The 15-times major champion probably had more riding on Monday's skins than the other three at an event. He last year signed a long-term contract to provide exclusive material to GolfTV, the PGA Tour's global streaming partner.
"We wanted to do something that's different, something unique," Woods said.
"I just thought the competitive atmosphere was fantastic, the shots we hit were great, and on top of that, I think the banter back and forth, the needling, the jabbing, it was all good fun."
MGM Resorts The Challenge: Japan Skins Highlights
After the first two holes are halved, Aussie Jason Day claims the first three skins and captures the first $30,000US to take the early advantage.
Rory McIlroy hits a superb approach shot on his way to a birdie and first three skins. The Irishman now ties for the lead alongside Tiger Woods with $60,000.
About Excel Sports Management:
Founded as a basketball management agency, Excel Sports Management has grown to represent top-tier talent, blue-chip brands and marquee properties. The agency has twice won Sports Business Journal Best In Talent Representation and Management and most recently was named second most valuable sports agency in the world by Forbes. The agency’s golf roster represents eight of the top-50 golfers in the world and includes Tiger Woods, Justin Thomas, Gary Woodland and Justin Rose. The Challenge: Japan Skins marks the second made-for-TV golf exhibition that Excel has run in the past year following The Match: Tiger vs. Phil.
About PGA TOUR:
By showcasing golf’s greatest players, the PGA TOUR engages, inspires and positively impacts our fans, partners and communities worldwide.
The PGA TOUR co-sanctions more than 130 tournaments on the PGA TOUR, PGA TOUR Champions, Korn Ferry Tour, PGA TOUR Latinoamérica, Mackenzie Tour-PGA TOUR Canada and PGA TOUR Series-China. Members on the PGA TOUR represent the world’s best players, hailing from 28 countries and territories (93 members are from outside the United States). Worldwide, PGA TOUR tournaments are broadcast to 226 countries and territories in 23 languages. Virtually all tournaments are organized as non-profit organizations to maximize charitable giving. In 2018, tournaments across all Tours generated a record $190 million for local and national charitable organizations, bringing the all-time total to $2.84 billion.
The PGA TOUR’s web site is PGATOUR.COM, the No. 1 site in golf, and the organization is headquartered in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida.