Updated: Thursday, 17 April 2014 06:35 | By Agence France-Presse

Players Championship adopts three-hole playoff

The Players Championship is abandoning its sudden-death playoff and switching to a three-hole aggregate playoff in a move that further separates the elite event from other US PGA Tour stops.

Players Championship adopts three-hole playoff

View of The Players Championship on May 12, 2013 in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida - by Richard Heathcote

The plan will go into effect for this year's tournament at TPC Sawgrass in May. Should the final round come down to a playoff, it will take place at holes 16, 17 and 18.

"Holes 16, 17 and 18 of The Players Stadium Course are perhaps the most dramatic closing holes in professional golf from a risk-reward standpoint, as they test all facets of a player's physical and mental game while under the pressure of trying to win such a significant championship," PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem said in a statement on Wednesday.

"Given the fact that winning The Players means you have defeated the strongest field in golf, we felt an aggregate playoff that incorporated these three holes was a more appropriate way to determine the champion."

Should a tie remain after the three-hole playoff, sudden death will start at the par-three 17th hole -- the course's signature hole with its intimidating "island green".

The Players Championship joins the US PGA Championship in using a three-hole, aggregate playoff.

The British Open uses a four-hole aggregate playoff and the US Open stages an 18-hole playoff.

The Masters is the only major to use a sudden-death playoff format, which is also the format used by all other US tour events.

There have been four playoffs in the 40-year history of the Players Championship, the last coming in 2011 when South Korea's KJ Choi beat David Toms with a par on the first extra hole -- the 17th.

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