HOUSTON (CBS HOUSTON) – Matt Jones will be looking to defend his 2014 title in the Shell Houston Open this weekend at the Golf Club of Houston in Humble.
This pre-Masters tournament will have 36 players in the 156 player field that will be competing in the Masters tournament later this month. Seven players in the field are former winners of the SHO including Phil Mickelson (2011) and Robert Allenby (2000)
Jones won the 2014 title after forcing a sudden death on the final hole with 54-hole leader Matt Kuchar. Jones would chip in for birdie at 18 on the first hole of the playoff to earn his first career PGA tour victory. Jones made it through three FedExCup playoff events before finishing 2014 ranked 67th. This will be his sixth appearance in the Shell Houston Open. Should Jones win this year, he would be the first to win consecutive titles since Vijay Singh in 2004 and 2005.
Jimmy Walker will bring two PGA wins in 2015 into Humble this weekend. Walker won last week’s Valero Texas Open in San Antonio. The San Antonio native will be competing in his 11th Shell Houston Open with his 24th place finish last year being his best.
Mickelson will start his eighth consecutive Shell Houston Open and his 11th overall. He won in 2011 and finished fourth in 2012. Mickelson last win on the PGA tour was the 2013 Open Championship, his fifth major title. Mickelson finished 26th in last week’s Valero Texas Open
The purse for this year’s Shell Houston Open will amass $6.6 million with $1.188 going to the tournament champion. The tournament champion will also earn 500 points towards the FedEX Cup.