The Match VII will take place at the Pelican Golf Club on Saturday, Dec. 10 as Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy face off against Justin Thomas and Jordan Spieth. The exhibition will tee off at 6:00 p.m. ET, and the golfers will play 12 holes under the lights in a best ball match play format.
The powers that be at Pelican Golf Club are on a mission to become the LPGA equivalent of Augusta National — a defining place for the sport that exceeds its identity as a course. The course itself is reminiscent of Augusta in many ways. The fairways are 40 yards wide on the front nine and up to 60 yards wide on the back nine.
Initially designed by Donald Ross, the course was updated in 2017 by Beau Welling, who works with Tiger Woods’ TGR Design. Welling wanted to create a “Golden Age” golf course in his redesign.
One of us (Collin) has actually played this track, and can confirm it’s one of the more beautiful places to play in Florida. Much like Augusta National, it takes advantage of the natural terrain and uses bunkers and water as the primary defense over thick rough. And just like the home of The Masters, it’s also near a Wal-Mart and plenty of other strip malls. You’d never think it would be this nice until you get behind the gates!
While Belleaire Country Club up the street is actually on the water and got most of the attention for years in the area, since the redesign this is probably the best track in Pinellas County. And for an area of the country with this many courses, that’s an accomplishment.
There are few water hazards at Pelican, though the rollicking greens pique some interest. It’s a second-shot course most of the way through, but on Hole 12, three LPGA golfers made a hole-in-one in the same tournament in 2021.