“As you are aware, the players listed below have not received the required conflicting event and media rights releases – or requested any releases at all – and their participation in the Saudi Golf League/LIV Golf event violates our tournament regulations,” Monahan said in a memo.
“The same fate applies to any other player who participates in future Saudi Golf League events in violation of our regulations.”
Players who have canceled their membership will be removed from the FedEx Cup scoreboard when the results of Sunday’s RBC Canadian Open are released.
The 17 golfers listed, including previous big winners Dustin Johnson, Phil Mickelson and Sergio Garcia, are not permitted to participate in PGA Tour tournaments as non-members via a sponsorship waiver or other eligibility category, the memo reiterated.
Mickelson, who previously had lifetime eligibility on the PGA Tour, said Wednesday he has no plans to leave the tour as he has earned the right to compete as he has “life membership that he deserves and for the he worked hard. “
As for what’s happening now for the PGA Tour, Monahan added in the statement, “You probably have more questions. What’s next? Can these players come back? Can they ever play PGA TOUR Champions? Trust that we are prepared to answer these questions, and we will approach them the same way we approach this entire process: by being transparent and respecting the PGA TOUR rules that you helped create.
“These players made their choice for their own financial reasons. But they cannot demand the same benefits, considerations, opportunities and platforms of PGA TOUR membership that you do. That expectation disregards you, our fans and our partners. You made a different choice, which is to abide by the tournament rules you agreed to when realizing your dream of earning a PGA TOUR card and—more importantly—as a part of the stellar ones organization in the world of professional golf.
What is the LIV Golf series?
The tour consists of eight events around the world and kicks off in London on Thursday.
Saudi Arabia’s PIF has pledged to award a total of $250 million in prize money. Each of the first seven events has a total prize pool of $25 million, with $20 million split between each player and the remaining $5 million split between the top three teams at the end of each week.
Before the first event in London, the 12 teams and their captain were announced. On Tuesday, the captains selected the rest of their teams in a draft format similar to the NFL and NBA drafts.
Unlike typical golf events, the London event is stretched over three days instead of four, with the 48-man field starting with a shotgun start – all at the same time – hoping to be a more engaging, action-packed event.
In a traditional stroke play format, the lowest score wins.
What was LIV Golf’s response?
Responding to the PGA Tour’s decision to suspend players Thursday, LIV Golf said, “Today’s announcement by the PGA Tour is vindictive and deepens the rift between the Tour and its members. Golfers, playing the game, is the entity that.” prevents golfers from playing.
“This is certainly not the last word on the subject. The era of free decision-making begins as we are proud to have a full field of players joining us in London and beyond.”