Dustin Johnson, a two-time major golf champion, resigned from his PGA Tour status on Tuesday and said he intends to play only in major tournaments and events sponsored by the Saudi-sponsored LIV Golf Course in the near future.
Speaking at a press conference ahead of the first of eight 2022 LIV Golf events to begin at the Centurion Club outside London on Thursday, Johnson also occasionally used terms such as “now” and “for now” to describe his decision. PGA Tour.
“Right now, I’m relinquishing my membership on the tour,” said Johnson, who joined the PGA Tour in 2008 and is ranked 15th in the world. He added that the LIV tour will play, “for now, that’s the plan.”
The getaway tour, led by Greg Norman, has promised a high performance fee and a format that guarantees each participant six-figure payouts, with 48 players competing for $ 25 million without a cut in the 54-hole format. A report in The Telegraph last week said Johnson had paid $ 125 million to join LIV Golf, whose main shareholder is the Investment Fund, which is worth more than $ 600 billion in Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund.
Johnson’s resignation on the PGA Tour may help the curator of the ride, Jay Monahan, avoid a suspension or a lifetime ban, as he indicated that punishment at that level was an option. But so far, the U.S.-based PGA Tour has been silent on Johnson and others, including Phil Mickelson, a six-time major champion who has won more than $ 94 million in touring events, who have stated they will play this week. LIV Golf Tournament. Monahan’s lack of response has been nothing more than an institutional time. PGA Tour players do not violate the rules of the tour until they have played without permission in a rival event, and the tour has not allowed players who have applied to play in England this week.
One thing is for sure: according to current guidelines, if Johnson is not a member of the PGA Tour, he will not be able to play in the biennial Ryder Cup, a 1927 tournament with major golfers in the United States and Europe with a history of 1927. He has played in the Ryder Cup five times, having been unbeaten in five games last year and helped lead the United States to victory.
But on Tuesday, at least in his head, the door was open for the next Ryder Cups.
“It’s clear that all things can change,” Johnson said. “Hopefully it will change someday and I will be able to participate. If not here’s a new product just for you! Eventually, I decided to come here and play here.
“The Ryder Cup is incredible and definitely something that has meant a lot to me. I am proud to say that I have represented my country, and I hope that I will be able to do it again. But I don’t make rules. ‘
Johnson is not sure if he will be eligible for major golf tournaments, although there is no indication that he will be banned from playing in the US Open next week. He qualifies on the field in many ways, with at least 2016 winning the championship. He also qualified for next month’s British Open for his 2020 Masters victory. The Masters title will usually welcome him to the Masters for many years to come, as well as a fourth major, the PGA Championship, for the next five years.
But the Masters is run by Augusta National Golf Club, which has shown in the past that it will make decisions independently. The PGA Tour is led by the PGA of America Before the event was held last month, the organization’s CEO, Seth Waugh, pledged allegiance to the established PGA Tour, which he referred to as part of the existing golf ecosystem.
“Our statutes state that you have to be a recognized member of a recognized tour to be a member of the PGA somewhere, and therefore have the right to play,” Waugh said in a talk about the PGA Tournament.
Asked about the LIV Golf alternative tour, Waugh replied: “We think – I don’t know if it’s a league, not a league at the moment – but the structure of the league is flawed.”