Ryder Cup will not be 'devalued' by potential absence of LIV Golf players – Rose

By Sports Desk February 08, 2023

The Ryder Cup will not be "devalued" if LIV Golf Invitational Series players are barred from taking part, insists Justin Rose.

The build-up to this year's tournament in Rome has been overshadowed by debates surrounding the eligibility of players who signed up for the controversial Saudi Arabia-backed LIV Golf circuit.

The United States have already said their team will not feature any LIV Golf players, while the chances of any European LIV Golf participants qualifying could be limited by this week's arbitration hearing to establish whether they can play on the DP World Tour. 

Speaking to BBC Radio 5 Live, Europe's three-time Ryder Cup champion Rose backed the tournament to cope with the absence of some of golf's biggest names.

"There is so much strength in depth, I don't think it will be devalued," Rose said.

"People like watching Dustin Johnson, Bryson DeChambeau, Brooks Koepka, Sergio Garcia, Ian Poulter. They bring a lot of passion. They will be missed for sure, but it is what it is.

"You have the powers that be, the traditional people who still have control of golf, and you have an upstart league that is trying to bring in a fresh idea and rival product.

"It's all good either way, they just can't both fit together in this scenario."

Rose, who ended a four-year PGA Tour title drought by winning the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am on Monday, gave genuine consideration to an offer from LIV Golf, but the tour's inability to award world ranking points led to him rejecting the chance to join.

"There have been moments where it all sounds pretty good on paper," he said of LIV Golf. "The concept itself has been around for seven years and there are elements where it sounds really, really cool.

"There was never a moment in time when all the top players could get behind it because there were too many unanswered questions, specifically around world ranking points, that was the major hurdle I faced with the decision.

"I couldn't get away from the fact I wanted to play major championship golf. I don't have exemptions down the line so my clean way into the majors is maintaining a good world ranking.

"So that became a null and void, a non-negotiable, from my point of view."

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