Tiger Woods tour wins debate sparked after McIlroy triumph at Zurich Classic

May 1, 2024

Rory McIlroy added his 25th PGA Tour win at the Zurich Classic but finds himself a whopping 57 victories behind the joint-most succesful player on the circuit in Tiger Woods

Rory McIlroy’s Zurich Classic victory alongside Shane Lowry should not be included in the same category as his other 24 PGA Tour titles, according to former Tour star Brandel Chamblee.

McIlroy achieved win No. 25 on the PGA Tour circuit on Sunday, teaming up with Lowry to win a dramatic playoff at TPC Louisiana. The victory is an important one for the Northern Irishman, as his quarter century tally moves him past the likes of Dustin Johnson and Gary Player in the all-time winners list.

The victory in New Orleans is McIlroy’s first team title, but Chamblee believes this should be put into a category of its own on the four-time major champion’s records.

Taking to X, the Golf Channel analyst wrote: “Team wins should have their own category amongst “tour wins”… most golf fans, if not ALL golf fans assume “individual” wins when a player’s total tour wins are named.” Chamblee then brought the great Tiger Woods into the debate, who is the joint-leading PGA Tour champion with 82 titles.

Woods shares the record with Sam Snead, but Chamblee believes the former should have the outright honour ahead of Snead due to the latter’s CV including five team victories. “Sam Snead has 5 team wins counted amongst his 82 wins while Tiger has ZERO team wins in his 82 wins…

“So I ask you who has won the most tour events of all time??? It is Tiger.” McIlroy however will no doubt rank his Zurich victory alongside the rest of his 24 wins, becoming just the 26th player in PGA Tour history to reach the milestone. The victory was his first on the PGA Tour in nine months, and first on American soil since October 2022.

Amid the debate, McIlroy said landing a team title made it all the more special being alongside a close friend in Lowry. “I think, yeah, to win any PGA Tour event is very cool,” he said post-tournament. “But to do it with one of your closest friends, we’ve known each other for a long, long time.

“Probably like over 20 years, so to think about where we met and where we’ve come from, to be on this stage and do this together, really, really cool journey that we’ve been a part of, and yeah, just awesome to be able to do it alongside this guy.” The pair have history of joining forces, having represented Ireland as teammates at the Olympics in 2021.

On the back of McIlroy’s comments, Lowry echoed his fellow champion. It’s amazing,” he said. “You know, we both felt like we needed to come in here and maybe have a very strong week because we wanted to get our summer going, and we’ve got a lot of big golf coming up soon. Would be nice to get that jump up the FedExCup that we both wanted.

‘It’s nice, it’s great to get a win. It was great fun all week, everything about it was just brilliant. I’ve enjoyed every minute of it, like having this man by my side is just — yeah, you seen the drive he hit up the 18th, the 72nd hole. When you’ve got him doing that, it’s pretty easy to play golf from there for me.”