One of the best fields in the long history of the BMW PGA Championship will converge upon Wentworth Club next week for the fourth Rolex Series event of the 2019 Race to Dubai, with huge crowds expected to watch the first counting tournament in the race to qualify for the 2020 European Ryder Cup team.
Defending Champion Francesco Molinari headlines the star-studded line-up alongside four-time Major winner Rory McIlroy, home favourites Paul Casey, Tommy Fleetwood and Justin Rose, BMW PGA Championship debutant Jon Rahm of Spain and reigning Open Champion Shane Lowry.
This year’s change of date, from the traditional May slot to mid-September, means that American stars Tony Finau, Billy Horschel, Andrew Putman and Patrick Reed have added the event to their 2019 schedules and will all make their BMW PGA Championship debuts from September 19-22.
Ten of the 12 European heroes from last year’s Ryder Cup triumph at Le Golf National will tee it up at Wentworth, with Paul Casey, Tyrrell Hatton, Fleetwood, McIlroy, Molinari, Alex Noren, Ian Poulter, Rahm, Rose and Henrik Stenson all reuniting at the Surrey venue, which is regarded as the birthplace of golf’s greatest team event.
The English fans will have plenty of home stars to cheer on during the week, with multiple European Tour winners Matt Fitzpatrick, Eddie Pepperell, Andy Sullivan, Matt Wallace, Danny Willett and Chris Wood adding to the raft of local favourites in the field.
Luke Donald and Lee Westwood, whose final-day dual at Wentworth in 2011, competing for the top spot in the Official World Golf Ranking, went down as one of the greatest finales in the history of the BMW PGA Championship, will also be joined in field by fellow former World Number Ones Martin Kaymer and Ernie Els.
Thomas Pieters and Rafa Cabrera Bello – who both made superb debuts as team-mates at The 2016 Ryder Cup – will also play, while current Race to Dubai number two Bernd Wiesberger will be targeting a third victory of 2019.
The 2020 Ryder Cup Captain Padraig Harrington will tee it up as the points race to qualify for his European team begins, joined by last year’s winning Captain Thomas Bjørn and the captain for Europe’s famous Miracle at Medinah victory in 2012, José María Olazábal.
Miguel Angel Jiménez will bring his unmistakable flair to the fairways of Wentworth for the first time since 2016, while former European Tour Number One Robert Karlsson also plays – the pair have 54 appearances in this event between them.
The BMW PGA Championship Celebrity Pro-Am, meanwhile, will once again attract a number of international superstars from the worlds of sport and entertainment.
England’s World Cup-winning cricket heroes Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler and Joe Root headline a list of household names from the world of sport, along with their Ashes team-mates Stuart Broad and James Anderson.
From the world of football, Manchester United legends Ryan Giggs and Paul Scholes will make their return to the Celebrity Pro-Am and will this year be joined by their 2008 UEFA Champions League-winning team-mate Nemanja Vidic, who appears for the first time.
AP McCoy, the 20-time Champion Jockey and golf enthusiast, will also return to Wentworth Club, as will English hockey star Sam Quek and former World Cup winning rugby player Mike Tindall.
Global popstar Niall Horan will also make a welcome return to the fold to headline a list of stars from the worlds of music and entertainment which also includes his fellow Irishman and former Boyzone singer Ronan Keating, legendary radio presenter Chris Evans and Strictly Come Dancing’s Anton Du Beke.
From the world of television, BBC Breakfast presenter Dan Walker will play once again and will be joined by popular sports broadcaster Clare Balding and ITV’s Good Morning Britain host Piers Morgan.
Fans can also buy tickets to see a top class line-up of entertainment on the Slingsby Show Stage in the BMW Championship village, with Rudimental headlining on Saturday night (September 21) and Anne-Marie bringing the curtain down on Sunday September 22.