Dustin Johnson DEFIES THE PGA Tour AND SIGNS UP FOR LIV GOLF INVITATIONAL AT CENTURION CLUB
FORMER WORLD NUMBER ONE AND 2-TIME MAJOR CHAMPION JOINS Lee Westwood, SERGIO GARCIA, GRAEME MCDOWELL, Ian Poulter, Martin Kaymer, Louis Oosthuizen, CHARL SCHWARTZEL, BRANDEN GRACE, KEVIN NA, BERND WIESBERGER AND RICHARD BLAND AS HEADLINE NAMES IN FIELD
YOUNG RISING STARS ADD TO STUNNING ANNOUNCEMENT AS LAURIE CANTER AND JED MORGAN SIGN UP FOR LIV GOLF
More than 170 Applications Received for the 48-Player Field Set to Make History June 9-11 at Centurion Club
London and West Palm Beach (May 31, 2022) – LIV Golf today announced the global field of players that will tee off at the inaugural LIV Golf Invitational Series tournament June 9-11 at Centurion Club (London). The 42 players revealed today represent 11 different countries, have a combined eight major titles, include three former world No. 1 ranked players and comprise 26 of the top 150 golfers in the world, as well as leading players from across the worldwide professional Tours.
The tournament received more than 170 applications, highlighting the players’ desire to have additional playing opportunities and excitement about the new format. In addition to global stars of the game, the landmark event will also bring together future stars who boast an NCAA National Championship, US Amateur Championships and professional tour wins among their accomplishments. The field will compete for $25 million in golf’s most exciting new format with the chance to become the first individual and team champions for LIV Golf.
“Free agency has finally come to golf. This is an opportunity to start a movement that will change the course of history by bringing new and open competition to the sport we all love. The desire shown by the players to participate in LIV Golf demonstrates their emphatic belief in our model and confidence in what we’re building for the future,” said Greg Norman, CEO and Commissioner of LIV Golf. “We couldn’t be happier at the diversity of our field, featuring players from around the world including major champions and those making their debut with us competing in their first professional event. We can’t wait to start our journey at Centurion Club with this group of first movers who are committed to growing the game in new and exciting ways.”
Offering opportunities for players from around the world, the LIV Golf Invitational London field welcomes leading players from the Asian Tour, DP World Tour, PGA Tour, Sunshine Tour, PGA Tour of Australasia and Japan Golf Tour, as well as offering places to the leading players from The International Series, which launched in Thailand in March, and highest finishing players from the International Series England, which takes place at Slayley Hall this week (June 2-5). LIV Golf’s broad spectrum of exemption categories is designed to ensure LIV Golf delivers new opportunities for international golfers, as well as player pathways into elite professional golf.
The 48-man field will play across 12 teams of four players each, which will be determined at The Draft on Tuesday, June 7. LIV Golf will appoint 12 team captains who will then select players in the first round in order of reverse OWGR ranking, and for the second and third rounds via a snake format. Team names and logos will also be unveiled at The Draft.
The first seven regular season events will consist of three 18-hole rounds for a total of 54 holes, with no cut, and shotgun starts to ensure a faster and more exciting pace of play. The eighth and final event will be a four-day team match play seeded knockout. Each Regular Season event will essentially be two simultaneous competitions – an individual and team event. The individual winner will be the player with the lowest 54-hole stroke play total. For the team competition, the best two stroke play scores will count for each team for the first two rounds. For the third and final round, the best three scores will count, with the lowest overall team score after 54 holes being named the team winner.
LIV Golf is owned and operated by LIV Golf Investments whose vision and mission are centered around making holistic and sustainable investments to enhance the global golf ecosystem and unlock the sport’s untapped worldwide potential.
REACTION FROM MATT HOOPER: THIS IS POTENTIALLY A SEMINAL MOMENT FOR OUR SPORT, AND ONE WHICH CAN FORCE THE LONG-WANTED AND NEEDED CHANGE FOR THE SPORT AT THE TOP LEVEL AROUND THE WORLD, BUT IT IS ALSO A POTENTIALLY EXPLOSIVE MOMENT FOR GOLF. GOLF'S SUPER LEAGUE WAR HAS FULLY ARRIVED. THIS IS World Series CRICKET, IN GOLF, IN 2022. FOR RODNEY MARSH, DENNIS LILLEE, TONY GREIG, IAN CHAPPELL, VIV RICHARDS AND GREG CHAPPELL, STEP FORWARD Dustin Johnson, Lee Westwood, GRAEME MCDOWELL, Ian Poulter, SERGIO GARCIA, Martin Kaymer, Louis Oosthuizen AND CHARL SCHWARTZEL. MAKE NO MISTAKE THIS ANNOUNCED FIELD IS FAR STRONGER, AND FAR MORE STACKED WITH BIG NAMES THAN ANYONE HAD EVER BELIEVED POSSIBLE.
JUST 2 MONTHS AGO Dustin Johnson RULED HIMSELF OUT, AND IT WAS SEEN AS THE DEATH-KNELL FOR THE SO-CALLED SAUDI GOLF LEAGUE, NOW KNOWN AS THE LIV GOLF INVITATIONAL SERIES, BUT NOW THAT CLEARLY IS NOT THE CASE. THIS ANNOUNCEMENT WAS MADE AT 0120 BST/2020 ET ON A TUESDAY NIGHT, BASICALLY ALLOWING THE NEWS TO BREAK SLOWLY OVERNIGHT ACROSS THE WORLD, BUT THIS WAS ALSO MADE AT 1119 MELBOURNE TIME, WEDNESDAY MORNING. THE FIELD INCLUDES SEVERAL AUSTRALIANS, BUT NOT PERHAPS THE ONE WE ALL EXPECTED.
ADAM SCOTT HAS DECLINED TO PLAY IN THE LIV GOLF INVITATIONAL SERIES, BUT FORMER AUSTRALIAN OPEN CHAMPION MATT JONES, WADE ORMSBY, BLAKE WINDRED AND JEDIAH MORGAN HAVE SIGNED UP TO PLAY, THE LATTER TWO ARE RISING STARS OF THE GAME, AND THIS GOES SQUARELY AGAINST THE NARRATIVE THAT NO YOUNG PLAYER WOULD RISK JOINING THE NEW CIRCUIT.
MORGAN RECENTLY WON THE PGA Tour OF AUSTRALASIA ORDER OF MERIT, FOLLOWING HIS STUNNING 11-SHOT WIN AT THE AUSTRALIAN PGA Championship, AND THE ORDER OF MERIT TITLE EARNED HIM SEVERAL KEY EXEMPTIONS INCLUDING TO THE DP WORLD TOUR, US OPEN, THE 150TH OPEN AND THE FINAL STAGES OF Korn Ferry Tour QUALIFYING SCHOOL. THE PGA Tour AND DP WORLD TOUR WILL LIKELY MAKE STATEMENTS ON WEDNESDAY MORNING REGARDING THE LIV GOLF INVITATIONAL AND THEIR MEMBERS WHO HAVE DEFIED THEIR REFUSAL FOR RELEASES, BUT THIS COULD ALSO IMPACT GREATLY ON MORGAN AND HIS FUTURE, IF THE TOURS AND MAJOR CHAMPIONSHIP ORGANISERS FOLLOW THROUGH ON THEIR PROMISES TO BAN PLAYERS.
THE FIELD ALSO INCLUDES THE 2021 US AMATEUR CHAMPION JAMES PIOT AND SPANISH AMATEUR DAVID PUIG.
THERE ARE 27 PLAYERS IN THE FIELD WHO ARE MEMBERS OF THE PGA Tour, DP WORLD TOUR OR BOTH.
THE MAINSTREAM GOLFING MEDIA WILL CASTIGATE THESE PLAYERS FOR JOINING LIV GOLF, DUE TO THE ORGANISATION'S SAUDI BACKING AND THE FACT THE GROUP IS TRYING TO CHALLENGE THE STATUS QUO, AND I FULLY EXPECT SOME OF GOLF'S MOST ICONIC NAMES OF OUR GENERATION TO BE MADE OUTCASTS.
MANY OF THE NAMES WHICH HAVE BEEN ANNOUNCED WERE EXPECTED BY MOST PEOPLE, BUT DUSTIN JOHNSON'S DECISION TO GO BACK ON HIS WORD OF 'LOYALTY TO THE PGA Tour', AS IT WILL BE SEEN BY THOSE IN FLORIDA, WILL NO DOUBT SEND SHOCKWAVES AROUND THE GOLFING WORLD OVERNIGHT AND INTO WEDNESDAY. I'LL HAVE MORE REACTION AND ANALYSIS OF POSSIBLY THE BIGGEST STORY IN GOLF FOR 60 YEARS THROUGHOUT WEDNESDAY ONLY HERE ON SHANKMEDIA.CO.UK/LIVGOLF