The Players Championship has found a new home in the month of March this year, and players and caddies swarmed to TPC Sawgrass to take on one of the most popular golf courses in the world.
Being the only tournament entirely run by the PGA Tour, there’s always a heightened level of enjoyment and competition at The Players, often referred to as the unofficial ‘fifth major.’ Winning this tournament not only cements yourself into the history of the Tour, but also in golf lore on a grand scale.
At the beginning of the week, however, there’s definitely a party-like atmosphere as players, caddies and fans let loose a little before the pressure-packed tournament rounds.
It’s your weekly dosage of Fluff. #FluffFriday
📸 Scott Halleran pic.twitter.com/kCtLvvF4MT
— The Caddie Network (@CaddieNetwork) March 15, 2019
Confidence must be at an all-time high at TPC Sawgrass, as Troy Merritt’s caddie Wayne-O “Draino” Birch explained in a video posted early in the week. Merritt is back in action after healing up from injury, and based on Birch’s summary, morale was high for the duo.
“When the rubber meets the road? Ya already know.”
— The Caddie Network (@CaddieNetwork) March 14, 2019
The island green 17th hole at TPC Sawgrass is one of the most iconic in all of golf as most Players Championships are won — or lost — on this daunting tee shot. Watching anyone tee off on the hole is worth the price of admission, and an ongoing tradition during practice rounds is to watch caddies take a crack at hitting the green.
Make no mistake folks: most of these caddies are extremely talented golfers in their own right. Take Stewart Cink’s caddie Taylor Ford, for example, as he stepped up and hit the island green like it was any other hole on any other course.
Ho-hum.. another year, another green hit on this 17th hole. Hit it to 12 feet & tapped in for birdie (that’s a 2) in front of @stewartcink , @zjohnsonpga and used @ryanmoorepga pitching wedge. #thanks pic.twitter.com/82VdiqXljA
— Taylor Ford (@_TFORD) March 14, 2019
Kip Henley, a favorite caddie highlight in this weekly space, also put his swing to the test on the iconic hole. It’s not often you see a textbook follow-through like this on any Tour, let alone in the midst of a Caddie Closest-To-The-Pin contest. The pureness of this action is truly breathtaking.
Hit it to 22 feet in The Caddy Closet To Hole Contest. So disappointed! I already had that money spent. I missed the lake anyway. Maxing out that @nikegolf shirt ! High on the toe ! pic.twitter.com/hP9jP9FOXH
— Kip Henley PGA loopr (@KipHenley) March 13, 2019
The toughest shot of the week may have come from caddie Geno Bonnalie who, after losing a bet to boss Joel Dahmen, had to eat an insanely spicy “Carolina Reaper Madness” corn chip before his attempt.
New twist to Caddie contest on TPC’s 17th hole. After losing a putting contest to his boss Joel Dahmen, caddie Geno Bonnalie had to hit after eating a “Carolina Reaper Madness” chip. He hit the green. pic.twitter.com/2QKQUUKZ2L
— Rex Hoggard (@RexHoggardGC) March 13, 2019
Here’s the video of how it all went down:
— Skratch (@Skratch) March 15, 2019