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Tour Championship Preview and The FedExCup

The final 30 players remain standing and will compete under a completely new scoring system when the FedEx Cup Series is decided at the 2019 season finale the Tour Championship this week.

East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta, Georgia, will be the host venue of the Tour Championship from August 22 as the last leg of the season is held with the best 30 players bidding to be crowned FedExCup Series champion and grab a share of $15 million in prize money.

The PlayOffs field has been reduced from 125 players at the Northern Trust at Liberty National Golf Club in Jersey City, New Jersey to 70 at BMW Championship at Medinah Country Club in Illinois, to leave 30 remaining in the Tour Championship.

While in previous years the field played from level par and collected points to add to those previously accrued to determine the FedEx Cup champion, this year will be different at the Tour Championship.

That’s because the points gained throughout the season and the PlayOffs series have been converted into starting scores ahead of the Tour Championship, meaning points standing leader Justin Thomas begins at 10-under par following his victory in the BMW Championship.

The decision was made to help simplify the race to be the PGA TOUR champion and remove the projected point based on finishing positions in the Tour Championship. No longer will we have a winner of the event itself and a different FedExCup series champion.

“As soon as the Tour Championship begins, any fan—no matter if they’ve followed the PGA TOUR all season or are just tuning in for the final event—can immediately understand what’s going on and what’s at stake for every single player in the field,” PGA TOUR Commissioner Jay Monahan said about the changes.

“And, of course, players will know exactly where they stand at all times while in play, which will ratchet up the drama, consequence and volatility of the competition down the stretch.”

Last year, Tiger Woods signalled his return to the big time following injury when winning the Tour Championship, but it was Justin Rose who was crowned as the FedExCup Series champion after fourth place at East Lake earned him enough points.

Now, that scenario is gone and it is all on the final result of the Tour Championship with points leader Thomas, who became FedExCup champion in 2017—the year he won his only major to date the USPGA Championship, starting with a two-shot lead ahead of the final four rounds of the season.

Behind Thomas (-10) is Patrick Cantlay at 8-under par followed by Brooks Koepka (-7), Northern Trust winner Patrick Reed (-6) and Rory McIlroy (-5).

The next five players—Jon Rahm, Matt Kuchar, Xander Schauffele, Webb Simpson and Abraham Ancer—begin at 4-under, with Gary Woodland, Tony Finau, Adam Scott, Dustin Johnson and Hideki Matsuyama all starting at 3-under.

The players at 2-under par are Paul Casey, reigning champion Justin Rose, Brandt Snedeker, Rickie Fowler and Kevin Kisner. The five players at 1-under are Marc Leishman, Tommy Fleetwood, Corey Conners, Sungjae Im and Chez Reavie.

The final five to make the Tour Championship will start at even par and they are Bryson DeChambeau, Louis Oosthuizen, Charles Howell III, Lucas Glover and Jason Kokrak.

See also: USGA Change Amateur Status Rule for 2020 US Open
FedExCup Series PlayOffs 2019 Format and Schedule
PGA TOUR Schedule 2019/20 Expands to 49 Events