In celebration of the 100th PGA Championship that takes place this year at Bellerive Country Club in St. Louis, we’ve unveiled the PGA 100 – a bracket-style competition to determine which year’s championship was the greatest in PGA Championship history. Over the course of six weeks, you can help us identify the greatest championship in the tournament’s history by voting once a day as the field is narrowed from 16 championships on July 8 to the single greatest championship on August 12.
You can vote and join the conversation here. In this matchup, the No. 4-seeded 1999 PGA Championship faces the No.-13 seeded 1948 PGA Championship.
No. 4 seed: 1999 PGA Championship
The 1999 PGA Championship at Medinah looked to be a preview of a long rivalry to come between Tiger Woods and Sergio Garcia.
Woods, just 23 at the time, blew the doors off the competition at the 1997 Masters, winning by 12 strokes in his first major as a pro. But since then, he hadn’t yet won a second major, though he was in the mix at several of them between that 1997 Masters and the 1999 PGA.
On the other side of this duel was a baby-faced, 19-year-old from Spain named Sergio Garcia, playing in his second major as a pro. He opened a lot of eyes with an opening-round of 66 for the early lead.
Woods lurked and through 54 holes, he shared the lead with Canada’s Mike Weir at 11 under, two strokes clear of Garcia and Stewart Cink.
In the final round, the outgoing Garcia played one group in front of Woods and Weir. Weir bowed out early, struggling to an 80 on the final day. Meanwhile, Garcia and Woods matched each other shot for shot and Garcia tried several times to get Tiger’s attention with antics like stare downs from the greens in front of Woods.
Tiger, however, never flinched and never surrendered the lead. He would win at 11 under, one stroke clear of Garcia.
While Garcia has enjoyed a tremendous career and picked up his first major win in the 2017 Masters, a rivalry with Woods never panned out.
For Woods, the win at Medinah was his second major overall and just the start of a major run to come that would captivate the golf world.
No. 13 seed: 1948 PGA Championship
Throughout his storied career, Ben Hogan only played in 10 PGA Championships. He didn’t care much for the match-play format – especially after his near-fatal car accident in 1949 -- seeing as his strength was going low, which served him well in stroke play.
Even with just those 10 starts, however, Hogan managed to win the PGA twice, including 1948 at Norwood Hills Country Club in St. Louis, Mo., where he took down Mike Turnesa, 7 and 6, in the final.
It was the second of Hogan’s nine overall major wins. His first PGA victory came at Portland Golf Club in Oregon, 6 and 4 over Ed Oliver in 1946.
After the 1949 accident, Hogan only played three more PGA Championships. After his victory in 1948, he didn’t return to the PGA Championship until 1960. The 36-hole matches were too much for his body.