Posted 1 years ago

Golf General

Golf’s most challenging year yet

Golf’s most challenging year yet
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The past year of golf has had its fair share of celebration worthy events, but what it will be remembered for, is the conflict surrounding the Saudi backed professional golf tour, LIV Golf. Touted as a rival league, there was initial uncertainty from PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan, about what this signalled for the future of golf.

 

The initial rumblings took place in February, at the Genesis Invitational, with talks of LIV Golf announcing its first group of directors from the PGA tour. Soon it was revealed that Phil Mickelson was involved in the league and had also made controversial statements about both the Saudi and PGA Tour officials.

 Finally, a few days after Smith had won the Player’s Championship, LIV Golf announced its eight-event series that would award $250 million, in prize money. This was followed by the revelation that their first event would include Dustin Johnson and Sergio Garcia, and Mickelson.

 

The list of names associated with LIV Golf events soon grew. When Brooks Koepka was asked at the US Open, about plans involving LIV Golf, he categorically denied it, but was added a week later to LIV Golf’s second event in Portland, Oregon. At the Scottish Open, Ian Poulter and two other players who had been suspended for participating in LIV events, were granted a reprieve by the British Court, and allowed to play.

 Soon Henrik Stenson, Jason Kokrak and Charles Howell III were also added to LIV Golf’s growing numbers. Stenson was subsequently replaced as the European Ryder Cup captain following this.

 

Matters came to ahead when 11 players, including Mickelson and Bryson DeChambeau, sued the PGA Tour in an antitrust lawsuit, at the District Court of the Northern District of California. Soon legal challenges appeared, with the refusal of a judge to grant a temporary restraining order to three LIV players, before the FedEx Cup playoffs.

 

Meanwhile, the PGA Tour, made changes to its schedule and prize money, beginning with the Travelers Championship. This was also observed at East Lake, where changes were introduced after a meeting between players, hosted by McIlroy and Woods. Currently, with 48 players, LIV Golf seems to be going head-to-head with the PGA Tour.

The crowning of McIlroy as the Fedex champion, marks the end of this season, but the conflict that originated this past year, is far from over.

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