GOLF

LIV Golf Invitational Series will seek OWGR consideration, says CEO Greg Norman

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BROOKLINE, Mass. — LIV Golf CEO Greg Norman said the new Tour will request a review of Official World Golf Ranking points on Monday.

Norman said the LIV Golf Invitational Series has a “very compelling” application after working closely with the OWGR Technical Committee to understand the process.

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During an interview with Fox News on Saturday evening, Norman also asked if PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan, one of eight members of the OWGR board, would recuse himself from voting on LIV’s candidacy. Golf.

“It will be interesting to see if Jay Monahan recuses himself from this vote because of what he said on television with [CBS Sports announcer] Jim Nantz the other day,” Norman said. “So it’s very interesting and it’s sad, you know, to put that extra pressure on it because our tour is a good tour. It’s supported, it has incredible ground. Our point should be that if we get the OWGR points, then everything else takes care of itself.”

During an interview with Nantz during the final round of the RBC Canadian Open on June 12, Monahan defended his position to suspend 17 players who defected from the Tour to join LIV Golf, which is funded by the Investment Fund. public investment from Saudi Arabia.

Other PGA Tour players, including 2020 US Open champion Bryson DeChambeau and 2018 Masters winner Patrick Reed, are expected to be included in the 48-man squad for LIV Golf’s upcoming event. It will be the first played in the United States, at Pumpkin Ridge in Portland, Oregon, from June 30 to July 2.

Monahan said players who participated in future LIV golf events without a conflicting event release would face the same penalty as the 17 who were suspended.

“Why do they need us so much? Monahan asked, of the LIV Tour, on CBS Sports. “Because these players chose to sign lucrative multi-year contracts to play in a series of exhibition matches against the same players over and over again. You’re looking at that compared to what we’re seeing here today and that’s why they need us so badly. You have The best players in the world are here at the RBC Canadian Open, with millions of fans watching, and in this game it’s the real, pure competition that creates the profile. of the greatest players in the world.

“And that’s why they need us. That’s what we do. But we’re not going to allow players to enjoy our loyal members, the best players in the world, for free.”

Other members of the OWGR Board of Directors include DP World Tour CEO Keith Pelley, USGA CEO Mike Whan, R&A General Manager Martin Slumbers, PGA of America Executive Director Seth Waugh , Augusta National Golf Club executive director Will Jones and Keith Waters, who represents the International PGA Tour Federation.

Players participating in LIV Golf who are not eligible to play on other tours will not earn OWGR points. The governing bodies of the four major championships use the OWGR ranking to determine byes for golf’s biggest events.

The USGA decided to let LIV Golf players who had already qualified for this week’s tournament at the Country Club stay on the course, but Whan said earlier this week he could foresee a day when he would be more difficult for LIV Golf players to do so. Players would still be eligible to participate in the US Open through open qualifiers.

“I could foresee one day,” Whan said. “Do I know what this day looks like? No, I don’t. To be honest with you, what we’re talking about [LIV Golf] was different two years ago, and it was different two months ago than it is today. We’ve been doing this for 127 years, so I think [the USGA] has to take a long-term view of this and see where these things are going. So we’re not going to be a knee-jerk reaction to what we’re doing.”

Even if LIV Golf were to become a recognized round, it would likely receive reduced points due to its current format. LIV golf events include 48-player, 54-hole courses; PGA Tour events consist of 72 holes and courses that can accommodate up to 156 players.

During the Fox News interview, Norman asked why the PGA Tour was so critical of LIV Golf when it also had sponsors who had done business with the Saudis.

“Look, I’m disappointed that people are going down this road, quite honestly,” Norman said. “If they want to look at it through the prism, then why does the PGA Tour have 23 sponsors doing business over $40 billion with Saudi Arabia? Why is it OK for sponsors? Jay Monahan will go Does it go to each and every one of these CEOs of the 23 companies investing in Saudi Arabia and suspending and banning them? The hypocrisy in all of this is so loud. It’s deafening.

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