The United States Golf Association (USGA) today announced a revised playoff format for all four of its Open Championships – the U.S. Open, U.S. Women’s Open, U.S. Senior Open and U.S. Senior Women’s Open. Each championship will implement a two-hole aggregate playoff in the event of a tie at the end of 72 holes of stroke play, effective with the 2018 season.
“We know how important it is to everyone in the golf world to see play conclude on the Sunday of a major championship, and to award the trophy to the champion,” said USGA CEO/Executive Director Mike Davis, who made the announcement prior to online player registration for each USGA Open Championship, which opens next week. “After receiving input from a variety of constituents, including players, fans, volunteers, officials and our broadcast partners, it clearly came across as something that everyone valued, and would benefit from.”
“There is no right or wrong way to determine a winner in stroke play, but we’ve seen over the years how the aggregate playoff has served us well in both the U.S. Women’s Open and U.S. Senior Open,” Davis added. “Two holes will allow a player to recover from any single mistake, and at the same time, provide a memorable, and perhaps dramatic, experience for all involved.”
In all four USGA Open Championships, the two-hole aggregate playoff will be used to break any ties after 72 holes of stroke-play competition. If the playoff results in a tie, the tied players would immediately continue to play off hole-by-hole (sudden-death format) until the champion is determined.
In its 117-year history, the U.S. Open has had 33 playoffs that have employed 18- and 36-hole formats. There have been 12 playoffs in U.S. Women’s Open history. A three-hole playoff was held for the first time in 2011. The U.S. Senior Open, which held a three-hole playoff for the first time in 2002, has had six playoffs in its championship history.
Online entry applications for 2018 USGA Open Championships will begin in the first week of March (https://champs.usga.org/index.html).
2018 USGA Open Championship Schedule
- May 31-June 3; 73rd U.S. Women’s Open, Shoal Creek, Shoal Creek, Ala.
- June 14-17; 118th U.S. Open, Shinnecock Hills Golf Club, Southampton, N.Y.
- June 28-July 1; 39th U.S. Senior Open, The Broadmoor, Colorado Springs, Colo.
- July 12-15; 1st U.S. Senior Women’s Open, Chicago Golf Club, Wheaton, Ill.
About the USGA
The USGA celebrates, serves and advances the game of golf. Founded in 1894, we conduct many of golf’s premier professional and amateur championships, including the U.S. Open and U.S. Women’s Open. With The R&A, we govern the sport via a global set of playing, equipment and amateur status rules. Our operating jurisdiction for these governance functions is the United States, its territories and Mexico. The USGA Handicap System is utilized in more than 40 countries and our Course Rating System covers 95 percent of the world’s golf courses, enabling all golfers to play on an equitable basis. The USGA campus in Liberty Corner, New Jersey, is home to the Association’s Research and Test Center, where science and innovation are fueling a healthy and sustainable game for the future. The campus is also home to the USGA Golf Museum, where we honor the game by curating the world’s most comprehensive archive of golf artifacts. To learn more, visit usga.org.