After a yearlong postponement due
to COVID-19, final preparations are underway for the start of the 53rd
Champions Cup Invitational. Originally scheduled during the first week of April
2020, the 72-hole, four-ball championship
will be played April 15-18 on the famed Cypress Creek Course at Champions Golf
Club in Houston.
Traditionally one of amateur
golf’s most highly anticipated season-openers, tournament officials and top-ranked players from all
across the country are eager for a return to action. The shared hope among
everyone involved is that this year’s event will provide the opportunity for
some spirited competition, to rekindle friendships and, fingers crossed, the
return to some version of normalcy
following an unprecedented past 12 months.
First held in 1961, the Champions Cup Invitational was
created by the club’s legendary co-founders Jack Burke Jr. and the late Jimmy Demaret as a way to honor amateur
players. The two World Golf Hall of Fame members might have made their mark in
the professional ranks, but they both firmly believed amateur golf was the true
heart, soul and future of the game. The championship Burke and Demaret
established as a tribute to amateurism has continued to grow in stature and strength over the past
50-plus years, annually attracting the country's best mid-amateurs eager
to test their mettle against the mighty Cypress Creek Course.
Champions Golf Club is one of the
most recognizable and tournament-tested venues in Texas. The historic club in
northwest Houston has hosted many of the game’s high-profile events, including the
1967 Ryder Cup, 1969 U.S. Open and five TOUR Championships, as well as the 1993
U.S. Amateur and 2017 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur. Most recently, Champions was
the site of the 75th U.S. Women’s Open, won by A Lim Kim who closed with three
consecutive birdies to claim the title.
Participation in the 53rd Champions Cup is by invitation only and is limited
to 56 teams. Both team members must be 25 years of age or older, maintain a membership at a
USGA-accredited golf club and have a WHS Handicap Index of 3.0 or less. Given
the unusual circumstances of the past year, the Champions Cup Executive
Committee has also decided that, provided players are otherwise eligible, all teams
selected for the 2020 championship starting field are exempt for 2021 and will
be given first consideration for re-entry.
The championship format is 72 holes
of four-ball stroke play contested on the Cypress Creek Course. The 4-day
competition begins on Thursday, April 15 and concludes on Sunday, April 18.
At the 52rd
Champions Cup in 2019, local Houstonians Matt Cordell and Bryant
Lack posted rounds of 65-68-66-68 to win the title. The duo’s 72-hole total of 17-under-par 267 was
eight shots clear of a trio of teams tied for second at 275 (-9).
For more information on the 53rd
Champions Cup Invitational, click