Colonial to precede Nelson on 2015 PGA Tour schedule

07/03/2014 9:50 PM

07/03/2014 9:51 PM

The Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial will be played the week before the AT&T Byron Nelson Championship next year after the PGA Tour had to tweak its 2015 schedule.

The Colonial, which traditionally has followed the Bryon Nelson, is scheduled for May 21-24. The Nelson is set for May 28-31.

The Colonial last was played the week before the Nelson in 2011.

The catalyst for the change is the move of the World Golf Championships Match Play tournament, which traditionally is held in February, to San Francisco’s Harding Park on April 29-May 3.

With the WGC match play event moving from its traditional spot, the Wells Fargo Invitational in Charlotte, N.C., will move to the week after The Players Championship, which is May 7-10.

The week after The Players Championship had been occupied by the Byron Nelson for the past seven seasons.

“For us, we’re good with it,” said Jon Drago, the tournament director for the Byron Nelson. “AT&T liked the date and they definitely didn’t want to finish on Memorial Day [weekend], so considering their commitments to Pebble Beach and Augusta, we’re happy to have them and glad we could try this spot out.”

Colonial will remain in its spot, opposite the European Tour’s BMW Championship, and the Nelson will slide to the week after Memorial Day. May has five Sundays in 2015.

Being spotted after the BMW Championship and three weeks before the U.S. Open means more top-tier players might be available for the Nelson, where conflicts have arisen in the past.

“We like being around Colonial,” Drago said. “This is only the second time we’ve followed them, so I’m not sure if it will make a difference or not.”

The Tour, the PGA of America and the city of San Francisco held a news conference Wednesday to announce not only Harding Park’s selection as Match Play host, but also that the course would host the 2020 PGA Championship and the 2025 President’s Cup.

Next year’s WGC match play event will not only move to the week before The Players Championship, but also will take on a revised format that includes pool play among 16 players in four groups.

They will play round-robin matches Wednesday-Friday before 16 players advance to single-elimination bracket play on Saturday and Sunday.

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