CHARLOTTE, NC (AP) — LIV Golf is ramping up the pressure on the Official World Golf Ranking, requesting in a letter to President Peter Dawson that its results be retroactively included in the world ranking.
LIV Golf, which has 48-player courses playing 54 tee shot holes each day, applied to be included in the world rankings on July 6.
Among the requirements to receive world ranking points is that a new tour meets the guidelines for at least one year before being admitted. The Saudi-funded league did not play its first tournament until June 9.
Dawson, the former CEO of the R&A, spoke last month on the Golf Channel about the new formula for the OWGR, though he declined to speak specifically about the LIV Golf app.
The letter sent Friday to Dawson was signed by the 48-player LIV Golf Invitational-Chicago tournament, along with two-time Masters champion Bubba Watson, who has signed with LIV but is not expected to start playing until next year.
“An OWGR without LIV would be incomplete and inaccurate, the equivalent of leaving the Big 10 or the SEC out of the US college football rankings, or leaving Belgium, Argentina and England out of the FIFA rankings. ”, the letter said.
Players signed to the lucrative LIV Golf series have received no ranking points, except at major tournaments or European tour events where they were allowed to play.
Dustin Johnson was number 13 in the world when he signed with LIV. He tied for 24th at the US Open and tied for 6th at the British Open. He has finished in the top 10 in all five LIV Golf events (including a win and a runner-up finish in the last two). He has dropped to 23rd place.
Talor Gooch was at No. 35 and was slowly slipping down the world rankings until he played the BMW PGA Championship on the European tour, finished fourth and fell back to No. 35. He dropped one place a week later.
European Tour events and other circuits if they choose to play, such as the Asian Tour or Japan Golf Tour, are currently the only places for LIV players to earn ranking points.
The Masters since 1999 has invited the top 50 at the end of the year, while the US Open and British Open also use world ranking as a key criteria. The PGA Championship has a history of inviting the top 100, although it is classified under “wild cards”.
The letter cites the OWGR’s mission to administer and publish each week “a transparent, credible and accurate ranking based on relative player performance.”
“How is it possible that such a system excludes players who compete at such high levels against some of the strongest fields of the year for big prizes, in such high-profile events?” the letter said.
LIV Golf has 13 of the top 50 players in the world rankings, led by Cameron Smith at No. 3.
THE TIGER AND THE PIP
Tiger Woods hosted a four-day tournament in the Bahamas and played a 36-hole tournament with his son at the PNC Championship late last year. That was enough for him to win the Player Impact Program and his $8 million.
He is Tiger Woods.
The PIP program will expand in 2023 and the winner will get $15 million. However, players cannot collect the PIP bonus until they have played 16 tournaments. Woods played just three times this year, all majors, and it’s unlikely he’ll add many more.
There is one exception, of course. And no, it’s not for everyone with at least 80 wins and 15 majors. Under the PGA Tour, the commissioner has discretion to award PIP money to players who miss the tournament cap if they have a serious injury or other emergency that prevents them from playing.
The Presidents Cup is in college basketball country, so it seemed only natural that both captains be asked for their five starters.
International captain Trevor Immelman went with Australia’s 6-foot-4 Cameron Davis and Canada’s 6-foot-1 Taylor Pendrith, two of his tallest players.
“I like little Tom Kim as a point guard. He also has a quick mouth on him, so he’s perfect for a point guard,” Immelman said.
Davis Love III, who played golf in North Carolina, had an easier time of it once he thought about it a bit. Tony Finau and Scottie Scheffler give him size and athleticism (and have a history playing basketball).
“I’m putting Tony in there all the time,” he said. We would, however, tape her ankles.
That was a reference to Finau badly spraining his ankle while running backwards to celebrate a hole-in-one during the Par 3 Tournament at the 2018 Masters.
Love also liked Jordan Spieth and Kevin Kisner at shooting guards. She didn’t even get to Sam Burns or Xander Schauffele.
“I still think we’re probably also losers if we play basketball,” Immelman said.
SEASON OF CHALLENGES
The end of next week is the deadline to fill the 20-man field for the Hero World Challenge in the Bahamas, with host Tiger Woods leaning on the world rankings.
The field is for the defending champion (Viktor Hovland) and the winners of the Four Players and The Players Championship. Cameron Smith won the British Open and The Players, but he won’t be eligible because he now plays for LIV Golf.
There are three waivers, one for the host of the tournament if he needs to (he does). The rest comes from the world ranking that was published after the Tour Championship.
Although the Hero World Challenge is an unofficial event, it is sanctioned by the PGA Tour and players who have violated its regulations by signing with the Saudi-backed league are not eligible.
With the exception of Smith, the next 13 players in the world rankings are not part of LIV Golf and would be eligible if they chose to play. LIV Golf would be quick to take advantage of the fact that world ranking points are offered to a field of 20 men.
As for the QBE Shootout hosted by LIV Golf CEO Greg Norman, it is still scheduled and under the same set of guidelines. That means Jason Kokrak and Kevin Na, both LIV players, won’t be defending their team’s title.
The Justin Thomas Foundation has donated enough money to provide weekend meals to 500 students at Camp Taylor Elementary School in his hometown of Louisville, Kentucky, during the school year through the “Blessings in a Backpack” program that provides food to needy children over the weekend. … Baltimore Country Club will host the 2026 US Senior Amateur and the 2013 US Women’s Amateur. Both will be played on the East Course. The Baltimore Country Club most recently hosted the 1988 US Women’s Open. … Max Homa has come from behind in four of his five PGA Tour victories. … Michael Castillo, the lead pro at the Kapalua Plantation course in Maui, is in for a busy start to the year. Castillo won the 2022 Aloha Section PGA at Poipu Bay. A week after helping organize the Sentry Tournament of Champions at his home course, he’ll be on the field for the Sony Open in Honolulu.
STATISTICS OF THE WEEK
Patrick Reed will have traveled almost 18,000 air miles from his home in Houston to four consecutive tournaments in Boston (LIV Golf), London (BMW PGA Championship), Chicago (LIV Golf) and Paris (French Open) and then back home.
“We’re used to being called favourites, even when we’ve lost three Ryder Cups in a row.” — Davis Love III, US captain in the Presidents Cup.
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