The field for next week’s Masters is now set, barring a unique winner from the Houston event this week. Interesting to see Todd Hamilton, who has struggled for several years, still gets in the field as a former British Open champ (the same factor that kept David Duval in for a long time after his game went south), as well as former PGA Championship winner Shaun Micheel. These are the kinds of silly local rules that keeps the Masters from having the best field in golf.
Masters champions: Zach Johnson, Phil Mickelson, Tiger Woods, Mike Weir, Vijay Singh, Jose Maria Olazabal, Mark O’Meara, Ben Crenshaw, Bernhard Langer, Fred Couples, Ian Woosnam, Sandy Lyle, Larry Mize, Craig Stadler, Tom Watson, Fuzzy Zoeller, Gary Player, Raymond Floyd.
U.S. Open champions (five years): Angel Cabrera, Geoff Ogilvy, Michael Campbell, Retief Goosen, Jim Furyk.
British Open champions (five years): Padraig Harrington,Todd Hamilton, Ben Curtis.
PGA champions (five years): Shaun Micheel.
Players Championship (three years): Stephen Ames.
U.S. Amateur champion and runner-up: Michael Thompson.
British Amateur champion: Drew Weaver.
U.S. Mid-Amateur champion: Trip Kuehne.
Top 16 players and ties from 2007 Masters: Rory Sabbatini, Jerry Kelly, Justin Rose, Stuart Appleby, David Toms, Paul Casey, Luke Donald, Vaughn Taylor, Ian Poulter, Tim Clark.
Top eight players and ties from 2007 U.S. Open: Niclas Fasth, Bubba Watson, Nick Dougherty, Scott Verplank.
Top four players and ties from 2007 British Open: Sergio Garcia, Andres Romero, Richard Green, Ernie Els.
Top four players and ties from 2007 PGA Championship: Arron Oberholser, John Senden.
Top 30 players from the 2007 PGA Tour money list: Steve Stricker, K.J. Choi, Aaron Baddeley, Adam Scott, Mark Calcavecchia, Woody Austin, Hunter Mahan, Brandt Snedeker, Charles Howell III, Boo Weekley, John Rollins, Stewart Cink, Steve Flesch, Robert Allenby, Brett Wetterich, Heath Slocum.
Winners of PGA Tour events that award full FedEx Cup points since the 2007 Masters: Nick Watney, Brian Batemen, Jonathan Byrd, Daniel Chopra, D.J. Trahan, J.B. Holmes, Steve Lowery, Sean O’Hair.
The field from the 2007 Tour Championship: Camilo Villegas.
Top 50 players from the final 2007 world ranking: Henrik Stenson, Trevor Immelman, Lee Westwood, Toru Taniguchi, Nick O’Hern, Miguel Angel Jimenez, Shingo Katayama, Robert Karlsson, Richard Sterne, Soren Hansen, Anders Hansen.
Top 50 players from world ranking published a week before the 2008 Masters: Martin Kaymer, Justin Leonard, Peter Lonard.
Special foreign invitations: Liang Wen-Chong, Prayad Marksaeng, Jeev Milka Singh.
And in case you were wondering, Marksaeng is: Prayad Marksaeng (born 30 January 1966) is a Thai golfer. He was a member of Thailand’s winning golf team at the 1987 South East Asian Games and turned professional in 1991. He has been a member of the Asian Tour since it began in its modern form in 1995. He was won six events on the tour and was one of the first ten men to reach a million U.S. dollars in career earnings on it.
He represented Thailand at the 2007 OMEGA Mission Hills World Cup and has featured in the top 100 of the Official World Golf Rankings.
Wen-Chong is: Liang Wen-Chong (born 2 August 1978) is a Chinese golfer. He is the highest ranked golfer from the People’s Republic of China and the only Chinese golfer in the top 100 of the Official World Golf Ranking. He has succeeded his mentor Zhang Lian-wei as the top Chinese player.
Liang plays on the Asian Tour and the Japan Golf Tour. He has won several tournaments in China, but his best finish on the Japan Golf Tour is second. After more than a dozen top ten finishes on the Asian Tour, he won the 2007 Singapore Masters, which was co-sanctioned by the Asian Tour and the European Tour. He was the second golfer from the People’s Republic of China to win on the European Tour after Zhang Lian-wei. In August 2007 he became the first golfer from the People’s Republic of China to play in the PGA Championship. He ended up missing the cut. He also received a special invitation to play in the 2008 Masters Tournament.
In 2007 he won the Order of Merit on the Asian Tour, becoming the first from mainland China to do so.