The First Look: Keegan Bradley returns to where career reinvention began at the ZOZO CHAMPIONSHIP

by Joanne Miller

Title: The ZOZO CHAMPIONSHIP Welcomes Elite Golfers for Title Defense and Return Players

The highly anticipated ZOZO CHAMPIONSHIP is just around the corner, and golf fans worldwide are eager to witness the battle for the title. This prestigious tournament will feature some of the sport’s finest athletes, including golfers aiming to defend their titles and those returning to the game after a break. Here’s a closer look at the key players to watch out for at this year’s ZOZO CHAMPIONSHIP.

Keegan Bradley: Aiming for a Historic Title Defense
Keegan Bradley is eager to make history by becoming the first golfer to successfully defend his title at the ZOZO CHAMPIONSHIP. Following a commendable performance with a ninth-place finish at the TOUR Championship, Bradley enters the tournament with confidence. With four previous appearances at the ZOZO CHAMPIONSHIP, where he has consistently finished within the top 15, including two top 10 finishes, Bradley is undoubtedly a strong contender.

Ryder Cup Trio Make a Comeback
This edition of the ZOZO CHAMPIONSHIP marks the return of three prominent American Ryder Cup players – Xander Schauffele, Collin Morikawa, and Rickie Fowler. Having last played during the Ryder Cup in Rome, these golfers are eager to bring their team spirit and momentum to the individual competition. Notably, Fowler was the 54-hole leader in the previous year’s championship, making his performance one to watch.

Hideki Matsuyama Returns to Home Soil
Hideki Matsuyama, a beloved figure in Japan, is set to captivate local fans as he returns to action on the PGA TOUR. Having won the ZOZO CHAMPIONSHIP in 2021, Matsuyama’s absence due to a back injury at the BMW Championship ended his remarkable streak of playing in the TOUR Championship for nine consecutive years. With Matsuyama’s return, the excitement among Japanese golf enthusiasts is bound to soar.

Sungjae Im and Si Woo Kim: Medal-Winning Pair
Sungjae Im, who participated in the TOUR Championship, returns to the ZOZO CHAMPIONSHIP after a noteworthy achievement at the Asian Games, where he and Si Woo Kim clinched the team gold medal. Im also secured the individual silver medal at the event, highlighting his growing potential as a top player.

Sahith Theegala: A Strong Start
Sahith Theegala, winner of the Fortinet Championship, his first-ever PGA TOUR title, tees up at the ZOZO CHAMPIONSHIP. With a notable fifth-place finish in last year’s championship, Theegala has proven his ability to excel on this course and will be looking to build upon his early success.

Japanese Contingent Shines
The ZOZO CHAMPIONSHIP will also boast a strong field of exceptional Japanese golfers, led by fan-favorite Hideki Matsuyama. Takumi Kanaya, a former world No. 1-ranked amateur, will make his 21st appearance on the PGA TOUR, having earned a spot through his triumph at the BMW Japan Golf Tour Championship Mori Building Cup. Another promising Japanese player, Kaito Onishi, will participate for the fifth time on TOUR after turning pro in 2021.

The ZOZO CHAMPIONSHIP promises to be an enthralling tournament, with both seasoned champions and emerging talents vying for glory. As the defending champion, Keegan Bradley seeks to etch his name in history, while the return of Ryder Cup teammates Xander Schauffele, Collin Morikawa, and Rickie Fowler undoubtedly adds excitement to the mix. Additionally, Hideki Matsuyama’s eagerly anticipated return and the strong presence of Japanese golfers ensure a riveting competition. Golf enthusiasts are in for a treat as these exceptional players compete against each other at the ZOZO CHAMPIONSHIP.

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