FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, June 18th, 2014

NBC Sports Group Providing More than 20 Hours of Tournament and News Coverage of the U.S. Women’s Open at Pinehurst

PGA TOUR in Connecticut for Travelers Championship

McIlroy Headlines Irish Open Field

Champions Tour in Illinois for Encompass Championship

312-player field at PGA Professional National Championship

to Compete for 20 Spots in August’s PGA Championship

ORLANDO, Fla. (June 18, 2014) – The U.S. Women’s Open begins on Thursday from Pinehurst, with Inbee Park looking to defend her title on the course that will host its second major in as many weeks after the completion of the men’s U.S. Open last Sunday. NBC Sports Group is providing more than 20 hours of tournament and news coverage of the event, including third and final round coverage on NBC from 3-6 p.m. ET on the weekend, featuring World Golf Hall-of-Famer Annika Sorenstam serving as an analyst. The PGA TOUR is in Connecticut for the Travelers Championship as Ken Duke defends his 2013 victory. Rory McIlroy headlines the field at the Irish Open on the European Tour, while the Champions Tour is in Illinois for the Encompass Championship. Golf Channel also will provide coverage of the PGA Professional National Championship from Myrtle Beach, with the top-20 finishers earning a spot in the 2014 PGA Championship in August at Valhalla.

LPGA TOUR

U.S. Women’s Open
Dates: June 19-22

Venue: Pinehurst Resort, Pinehurst, N.C.

Tournament Airtimes On NBC (Eastern):

Saturday          3-6 p.m. (Live)

Sunday            3-6 p.m. (Live)

Broadcast Notes:

NBC Sports Group airing more than 20 hours of tournament and news coverage: Golf Channel and NBC are providing more than 20 hours of tournament and news coverage throughout the week, featuring top tournament storylines, analysis and interviews within the network’s Morning Drive and Golf Central programming, in addition to weekend tournament coverage on NBC.

Sorenstam in the booth: World Golf Hall-of-Famer Annika Sorenstam will serve as an analyst during NBC’s weekend coverage, joining NBC Sports/Golf Channel analyst Gary Koch and play-by-play commentator Dan Hicks in the broadcast booth.

Park defends: Inbee Park finished four shots ahead of the field in the 2013 U.S. Women’s Open to claim her third consecutive major championship.

Headlining the field: Stacy Lewis, Inbee Park, Suzann Pettersen, Michelle Wie, Lydia Ko, Jessica Korda, Lexi Thompson, Anna Nordqvist, Paula Creamer and Ai Miyazato.

NBC Broadcast Team:

Play by Play: Dan Hicks

Analyst: Gary Koch / Annika Sorenstam

Tower: Mark Rolfing / Steve Sands

On Course: Roger Maltbie / Kay Cockerill / Jane Crafter

Interviews: Steve Sands

PGA TOUR

Travelers Championship
Dates: June 19-22

Venue: TPC River Highlands, Cromwell, Conn.

Tournament Airtimes On Golf Channel (Eastern):

Thursday         3-6 p.m. (Live) / 6:30-9:30 p.m. (Replay)

Friday              3-6 p.m. (Live) / 6:30-9:30 p.m. (Replay)

Saturday          1-2:30 p.m. (Live) / 6:30-11 p.m. (Replay)

Sunday            1-2:30 p.m. (Live) / 8 p.m.-12:30 a.m. (Replay)

Broadcast Notes:

Golf Central ­on-site at TPC River Highlands: Golf Central will originate from TPC River Highlands, providing news, analysis and interviews throughout the week. 

Group of amateurs to make professional debut: 2014 Jack Nicklaus and Ben Hogan awards winner Patrick Rodgers (Stanford), 2014 NCAA individual champion Cameron Wilson (Stanford), 2014 NCAA National Championship team member Bobby Wyatt (Alabama), and 2014 Masters low amateur Oliver Goss are all in the field making their professional debuts this week.

Duke defends: Ken Duke defeated Chris Stroud on the second playoff hole in last year’s event to earn his first-career PGA TOUR victory at the age of 44.

Headlining the field: Jason Day, Matt Kuchar, Dustin Johnson, Brandt Snedeker, Bubba Watson, Keegan Bradley, Zach Johnson, Sergio Garcia, Patrick Reed and Erik Compton.

Golf Channel Broadcast Team:

Play by Play: Brian Hammons

Analyst: Frank Nobilo

Tower: Peter Oosterhuis / Matt Gogel

On Course: Rich Beem

Golf Central on-site Broadcast Team:

Host: Ryan Burr / George Savaricas

Analyst: Brandel Chamblee / Karen Stupples

EUROPEAN TOUR

Irish Open
Dates: June 19-22

Venue: Fota Island, Cork, Ireland

Tournament Airtimes On Golf Channel (Eastern):

Thursday         5-8 a.m. / 10 a.m.-1 p.m. (Live)

Friday              5-8 a.m. / 10 a.m.-12:30 p.m. (Live)

Saturday          7:30-11:30 a.m. (Live)

Sunday            7-11:30 a.m. (Live)

Broadcast Notes:

Fitzpatrick to make professional debut: Last week’s U.S. Open low amateur Matthew Fitzpatrick will make his professional debut this week after making the cut (T-48th) at Pinehurst last weekend.

Casey defends: Paul Casey won by three shots over Robert Rock and Joost Luiten in 2013 for his 12th career European Tour win.

Headlining the field: Rory McIlroy, Graeme McDowell, Victor Dubuisson, Matteo Manassero, Joost Luiten, Paul Casey, John Daly, Jose Maria Olazabal and Stephen Gallacher.

Broadcast Team:

Studio Host: Mike Ritz

Play by Play: Julian Tutt

Analyst: Shane O’Donoghue / Tony Johnstone

On Course: Jamie Spence

CHAMPIONS TOUR

Encompass Championship
Dates: June 20-22

Venue: North Shore Country Club, Glenview, Ill.

Tournament Airtimes On Golf Channel (Eastern):

Friday              12:30-2:30 p.m. (Live) / 1-3 a.m. (Replay)

Saturday          3-6 p.m. (Live) / 11:30 p.m.-2:30 a.m. (Replay)

Sunday            3-5 p.m. (Live) / 1:30-3:30 a.m. (Replay)

Broadcast Notes:

Unique format: Champions Tour professionals will play alongside amateurs in the first two rounds of the event. Notable amateurs in the field include: Roger Clemens, Mike Eruzione, Toni Kukoc, Jeremy Roenick, and Brian Urlacher.

Stadler defends: Craig Stadler won by one stroke over Fred Couples in last year’s inaugural edition of the event, earning his ninth career Champions Tour win.

Headlining the field: Bernhard Langer, Colin Montgomerie, Kenny Perry, John Cook, Brad Faxon, Tom Lehman, Jeff Sluman, Rocco Mediate, Mark Calcavecchia and Craig Stadler.

Golf Channel Broadcast Team:

Play by Play: Bob Papa

Analyst: Lanny Wadkins

Tower: John Mahaffey

On Course: Billy Ray Brown / Phil Parkin

PGA Professional National Championship
Dates: June 22-25

Venue: Grand Dunes Golf Course, Myrtle Beach, S.C.

Tournament Airtimes On Golf Channel (Eastern):

Sunday            5-7 p.m. (Live) / 3:30-5:30 a.m. (Replay)

Monday           3:30-6 p.m. (Live) 3-5 a.m. (Replay)

Tuesday           3:30-6:30 p.m. (Live) / 3-5 a.m. (Replay)

Wednesday     2-5 p.m. (Live) / 2-4 a.m. (Replay)

Broadcast Notes:

Top-20 to earn spot in PGA Championship: Of the 312-man field, the top-20 finishers will receive a spot in the 2014 PGA Championship field at Valhalla in August.

Golf Channel Broadcast Team:

Play by Play: Dave Marr

Analyst: Michael Breed

Tower: Phil Blackmar

On Course: Steve Burkowski / Scott Walker

-NBC Sports Group-