Former Gators golfer Sam Horsfield has decided to join the LIV Golf Invitational Series. LIV Golf is a Saudi Arabian start-up golf league that is attempting to rival the PGA.
Two-time Open Championship winner, Greg Norman, is spearheading LIV’s formation. Financing for the league is backed by the Saudi Arabia Public Investment Fund.
LIV Golfers jeopardize PGA Tour eligibility
Many PGA Tour players have recently defected from the Tour and the decision to join the new start-up league. Some big names that are highlighting the switch include multiple-time
major championship winners Dustin Johnson and Phil Mickelson. When asked about the possible punishments from the PGA Tour, Johnson admitted that he didn’t know what his future with the PGA Tour would look like.
PGA Tour commissioner, Jay Monahan, has warned potential LIV golfers that the PGA Tour will inflict stiff penalties on players that decide to defect from the PGA Tour.
Monahan has threatened players with fines, suspensions and even lifetime bans if they choose to play in the LIV Golf Circuit without first getting a release from the PGA. Multiple players have requested a release, but each request has been denied by the PGA.
Will LIV Golfers be able to participate in Majors?
With all of the uncertainty surrounding the LIV Golf Circuit, many wondered if these players would be eligible to play in major tournaments. The next major is the US Open, scheduled for June 16-19.
Although the USGA has sided with the PGA in the past, they are not ready to ban LIV Golf players just yet. When deciding whether or not to ban these players, the USGA looked at the situation in the fairest way possible. They acknowledged that these players had earned the right to participate in the US Open, and their involvement in another golf league should not change that fact.
— U.S. Open (USGA) (@usopengolf) June 7, 2022
Why players are choosing LIV over PGA
The LIV Golf Circuit has been able to flip many big names golfers to join their league. A major factor that is swaying golfers to LIV is the financial benefits of the league. For each LIV Golf tournament, the first-place finisher will receive a four million dollar payout.
The large payouts don’t only go to the winners, as the last-place finisher at the upcoming tournament in London will still receive a payout of $120,000.
LIV Golf is also offering large salaries to lure in some big names. Golf legend Phil Mickelson accepted a 200 million dollar contract to join LIV Golf.
Phil Mickelson officially listed in the field for the LIV Golf opener in London.
Hearing from a source that Mickelson signed a contract Saturday night worth ~$200 million.
— Brentley Romine (@BrentleyGC) June 6, 2022