Golf: McIlroy speaks after shot accidentally hits father
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The PGA Tour are set to announce a series of ‘guaranteed money’ events to their 2023 calendar, according to a report from GolfWeek. The expected decision comes in the wake of the newly announced Saudi-backed golf series led by two-time major champion Greg Norman.
The Saudi-backed golf series is said to be heavily opposed by the PGA Tour – and they have reportedly made a move of their own.
Norman’s announcement came last week, as he was confirmed as chief executive of LIV Golf Investments – an entity operating on behalf of the Saudi Arabia government – who were providing the backing of a new worldwide golf series as part of the Asia Tour.
The new series had been frowned upon by many – including PGA Tour chiefs – but Norman revealed he was out to offer the world’s best golfers the chance to play globally for an assured financial prize.
However, it seems that the world-renowned American-based Tour is now playing its card to ensure some of its biggest players are not lured away to Norman’s new worldwide event with one of their own.
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According to GolfWeek, while internal discussions are continuing over specifics, the PGA Tour have tentative plans to implement a series of ‘four to six’ international events annually in Europe, Asia and the Middle East with guaranteed money going to ‘the world’s best players’.
GolfWeek also revealed they had approached the Tour for comment, however a spokesperson refused to confirm any concrete logistics surrounding the series.
The spokesperson said: “We’re absolutely always looking at our future product and schedule, with all options on the table as to fields, formats and tournament locations, especially considering our advancing Strategic Alliance with the European Tour.
“No details or decisions have been made at this time.”
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As mentioned Jay Monahan – commissioner of the PGA Tour – had also previously announced a strategic alliance with their European counterparts, in what was seen as yet another venture to see off any attempt of being dethroned by the Saudi-supported series.
The European Tour themselves have made their own personal move to ensure they continue to fend off any Middle East-backed rival by rebranding as the ‘DP World Tour’ for the 2022 season.
This was yet another financial landmark for the ever-growing professional game, with prize funds on the Tour set to skyrocket to over £147 million for the season.
As well as this, it seems they too are aiming to solidify themselves as a global event, as their rebranding will see them aptly incorporate ‘world’ into their name, with over half of their tournaments set to be played outside of Europe.
With their PGA Tour counterparts now also set to follow them into the world of ‘global golf’, GolfWeek also confirmed that whilst formats are not yet concrete, the idea of a team event as part of the Tour’s worldwide ventures is very much a prospect.
They revealed that an ‘executive’ PGA Tour source commented: “Nothing firm on formats yet, but a team format is certainly one of the ideas on the table.”
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