Norman lashes out at 'anti-golf' PGA Tour for blocking LIV Golf Invitational series entrance

By Sports Desk May 11, 2022

Greg Norman has slammed the "anti-golfer, anti-fan, and anti-competitive" PGA Tour for denying players from entering the opening Saudi-backed LIV Golf Invitational series event next month.

Phil Mickelson, Sergio Garcia and Lee Westwood are among the players who asked to be released to play in the inaugural event at Centurion Club from June 9-11.

The PGA Tour has denied members permission to play in London, as the Canadian Open will be staged at the same time.

"We have notified those who have applied that their request has been declined in accordance with the PGA Tour Tournament Regulations," Tyler Dennis, executive vice president and president of the PGA Tour, wrote in a memo sent to members on Tuesday.

"As such, Tour members are not authorised to participate in the Saudi Golf League's London event under our regulations.

"As a membership organisation, we believe this decision is in the best interest of the Tour and its players."

Norman, the CEO and commissioner of LIV Golf, on Tuesday revealed that the event had secured an additional $2billion in funding ahead and stated that several top players had said they would play without a release.

Norman said in a statement: "Sadly, the PGA Tour seems intent on denying professional golfers their right to play golf, unless it's exclusively in a PGA Tour tournament.

"This is particularly disappointing in light of the Tour's non-profit status, where its mission is purportedly 'to promote the common interests of professional tournament golfers.'

"Instead, the Tour is intent on perpetuating its illegal monopoly of what should be a free and open market.

"The Tour's action is anti-golfer, anti-fan, and anti-competitive. But no matter what obstacles the PGA Tour puts in our way, we will not be stopped. We will continue to give players options that promote the great game of golf globally."

Related items

  • Wet weather suspends play in Florida with Shane Lowry three shots off the pace Wet weather suspends play in Florida with Shane Lowry three shots off the pace

    Wet weather suspended play on the final day of the Cognizant Classic with 26 players to return on Monday, including Ireland’s Shane Lowry who sits three strokes off the pace.

    After sharing the lead on the third day with American Austin Eckroat and England’s David Skinns, Lowry played five holes on Sunday at Palm Beach Gardens in Florida before play was suspended, hitting one bogey and dropping to equal fourth place.

    Eckroat picked up two birdies in his first seven holes to take the outright lead, while Skinns  dropped two shots in his five holes to sit tied for eighth.

    South African Erik van Rooyen finished one shot behind Eckroat after he shot nine birdies through 18 holes, while American Jake Knapp sits in third place and two shots off the lead after 15 holes.

    The severe weather in Florida caused a three hour delay to play with officials having to suspend play because of dangerous conditions for players and spectators, after lightning struck near the course.

  • ‘Collective’ global tour is inevitable and best for golf – Keith Pelley ‘Collective’ global tour is inevitable and best for golf – Keith Pelley

    Outgoing DP World Tour chief executive Keith Pelley says unification between between the PGA Tour and LIV Golf is “inevitable”, even if it takes 10 years.

    Golf’s civil war has rumbled on for two years since LIV, the big-money Saudi breakaway venture, began tempting a host of top names with lavish paydays.

    “Whether it be in six months, a year, two years or 10 years, I think people are coming to the realisation that a collective product is in the best interest of global golf,” Pelley told the Sunday Times.

    “It is the only way growth and prize funds continue at this level. It is inevitable.”

    Rory McIlroy said recently he fears golf will remain “fractured forever” unless the opportunity to create a more global game is embraced.

    The four-time major winner, initially an outspoken critic of LIV, has suggested a world tour incorporating “corporate America” and Saudi Arabian investment, but one which also elevates historic national Opens in the likes of Australia and South Africa.

    “I’m very much aligned with Rory,” added Pelley.

    “Rory is the player I have leant on the most, going back to the beginning. You need people who aren’t afraid to say what they really think.”

  • Ireland’s Shane Lowry and England’s David Skinns share lead in Florida Ireland’s Shane Lowry and England’s David Skinns share lead in Florida

    Ireland’s Shane Lowry and England’s David Skinns both shot a five-under-par 66 to share the lead heading into the final round of the Cognizant Classic.

    American Austin Eckroat is alongside them on 13-under-par at the PGA National in Florida – three clear of the chasing pack.

    Former Open champion Lowry is looking for his third PGA Tour victory, while Skinns is yet to finish in the top 10 on the PGA Tour.

    Lowry said he enjoys the “tough golf” after rain and wind made conditions difficult.

    “I like when everything is on the line a lot out there,” Lowry said.

    “I feel like I just know how to play the golf course. I feel like I’ve figured it out.”

    Skinns hit five birdies without a blemish while Lowry mixed six birdies with a bogey.

    Among five players three shots off the pace are Scotland’s Martin Laird – who hit seven birdies in a third-round 66 – and Australian Min Woo Lee.

    Rory McIlroy, who started the day tied with Lowry and Skinns, dropped six shots off the pace with a 72.

© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.