According to rumors, stars from the USA and Europe were forced to participate in the new tour in the amount of up to three million dollars. One of the most notable converts is the former world number one Dustin Johnson from the USA. The son-in-law of Canadian ice hockey legend Wayne Gretzky has announced that he has resigned from the PGA Tour. The 37-year-old can no longer compete in the Ryder Cup, the traditional continental comparison of the best golfers from the USA and Europe.
At the start of the week, another prominent American golfer, Phil Mickelson, confirmed his commitment to the 48-player team. However, unlike Johnson, the 51-year-old does not want to leave the PGA Tour. “I’ve earned my membership for life and I don’t want to give it up,” Mickelson said before the launch event. He added that he did not want to be forced to do so.
PGA stars migrate to the new round
The world of professional golfers, clearly organized for decades, is beginning to falter. The controversial new LIV Golf Invitational Series wants to compete with well-known organizers. Many PGA stars are migrating to the new tour.
Wiesberger looks forward to a ‘entirely new experience’
A number of European Ryder Cup champions are also taking part in the first LIV event at Centurion Club in north London: England’s Lee Westwood and Ian Poulter are present, as well as Spain’s Sergio Garcia and currently second in Austria, Bernd Weisberger. The Burgenlander is looking forward to a “completely new experience”. The 36-year-old wants to keep his DP World Tour ticket. “Personally, I don’t see any conflict with participating in London,” Wiesberger says.
Martin Kaymer takes a similar view. “It’s a great way to play a different kind of golf tournament. The new format is exciting,” said the two-time main winner from Germany, who is currently only fully eligible to play on the DP World Tour. “I would be lying if I said money is not a motive. This is very human.”
Woods . “Nine Numbers” Show
However, many top players such as superstar Tiger Woods and Northern Irishman Rory McIlroy turned down the lucrative offer and clearly identified themselves with their former employers. “Woods turned down a deal that was incredibly high. We’re talking about a nine-figure high here,” LIV general manager Greg Norman told The Washington Post. The Australian – nicknamed “The Jaw” – was himself one of the best golfers in the world. the world in the eighties and nineties.
The PGA and DP World Tour have previously threatened to impose penalties on participants in the LIV Series. How these sanctions might turn out is still open. However, the organizer of the US Open, which will be held next week, has announced that participants in the LIV Tour can also participate in the major tournament in Brooklyn, in the US state of Massachusetts.
Saudi Arabia is working on the picture
The new series is under criticism because of the millions invested in Saudi Arabia. The background is that the state, which has been criticized for human rights violations, is trying to improve its reputation through lucrative sporting events.
The money comes from the Public Investment Fund, headed by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. Among other things, PIF owns an 80 per cent majority stake in Premier League club Newcastle United. The lucrative Formula 1 is already making its rounds in the desert country. Now the game of golf is supposed to help polish the image of Saudi Arabia.
Less rides, more money
The LIV Tour itself wants to score points with players and fans in a different format. Seven of the eight tournaments will be played over three days instead of four. There is no cut-off and all players start around the same time to make rounds shorter and more attractive to viewers. The final event at the end of October in Miami, on a golf course owned by former US President Donald Trump, is then a four-day all-team tournament.
In the first seven events, there will be a team rating as well as an individual rating. $20 million was awarded for the singles competition in London – the winner was $4 million, and the most recent was $120,000. For comparison, Scottie Scheffler received $2.7 million in prize money for his April Masters win.
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