AUSTIN (KXAN) — The WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play returns to Austin Country Club this week for the seventh straight year.

The match play-style tournament will be held in Austin for the sixth time after the COVID-19 pandemic canceled 2020’s event. Billy Horschel won the tournament’s return event in 2021, defeating former Texas Longhorns golfer Scottie Scheffler in the final.

Some version of a match play tournament has been held during the tour calendar for more than 20 years. Though, the format and location has changed several times.

Here’s what to know about this week’s tournament at Austin Country Club.

Match play format explained

The current format guarantees each golfer at least three matches, which is better for fans in attendance and allows each golfer more time on the course.

The field is limited to 64 of the world’s top golfers, decided by the official world golf rankings about a week prior to the event. The top 16 players are placed in the A category. The B category has players ranked 17-32. The C category features players 33-48, while D has players ranked from 49-64.

Each golfer is placed into a group based off his ranking. The groups are drawn the Monday before the event by a lottery system with a player from the A, B, C and D categories.

These are the groups for the 2022 event.

The round-robin, group stage runs from Wednesday through Friday. Each golfer will go head-to-head with another golfer in his group. The golfer with the most points from his group advances to the knockout rounds over the weekend.

How to win in match play

In match play, golfers go head-to-head rather than playing against the entire field.

Strokes under par doesn’t matter as much in match play. Each hole counts separately and the objective is to win more holes than your competitor during the round.

There are three possible outcomes from a match: win, lose or draw. A win is worth one point and a draw is worth .5 points. No points are rewarded for a loss.

A winner is determined when one golfer has an advantage over his opponent that is greater than the holes remaining in the round. For example, if Jordan Spieth leads his opponent by three holes with only two holes left, he’s clinched the point for the match.

If the players finish even in holes won, the point is split with each golfer earning .5 points.

If there’s a tie in the group stage standings, the golfers involved will play sudden-death holes until a winner is decided.

Ties are removed for the weekend, knockout rounds. Each match must have a winner and a loser with the winner advancing to the next round.

Tournament Schedule

  • Wednesday: Group stage
  • Thursday: Group stage
  • Friday: Group stage
  • Saturday: Round of 16 and Quarterfinals
  • Sunday: Semifinals and Finals

How to watch the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play (CDT times listed)

Golf Channel and NBC (KXAN) will air 34 hours of tournament action from Wednesday through Sunday.

Wednesday-Friday: Broadcast starts at 1 p.m. on The Golf Channel

Saturday: 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. The Golf Channel | 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. NBC (KXAN)

Sunday: 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. The Golf Channel | 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. NBC (KXAN)