A week after branding the official world golf ranking “laughable”, LIV Golf commissioner Greg Norman has revealed the Top 20-ranked superstar he’s trying to lure across to the Saudi-backed league.

In an exclusive interview with Australian Golf Digest for its bumper April edition, Norman let a bombshell slip when asked about his feelings towards Rory McIlroy now that the Northern Irishman had removed himself from the PGA Tour player advisory board due to “professional and personal commitments.”

Prior to his resignation, McIlroy had been an outspoken critic of both LIV Golf and Norman, declaring the start-up league “dead in the water” and regularly exchanging barbs with the Aussie legend, a slanging match that culminated with this dig after McIlroy’s 2022 Canadian Open triumph:


Pressed on how he would feel should McIlroy win this year’s Masters and become golf’s sixth grand slam winner, Norman said he would hold no grudges.

“One thing I do is I take emotion out of everything,” he told Australian Golf Digest. “I’m very good at that. I don’t bring emotion into business. I don’t bring emotion into anything. If you do, I think that shows the weakness of an individual.

“When Rory missed out on the (2011) Masters when he hit that wayward tee shot on 10, I sent him a message of support afterwards because I felt his pain, and he responded. And if Rory wins this year’s Masters, I’ll say congratulations on achieving the grand slam, right? That’s sport and that’s sportsmanship, and that’s the humility of the game. That’s me. That’s how I would do it.”

Norman continued, dropping this LIV Golf recruitment bombshell in the process.

“I’ll give you another example. We’ve been trying to get Hideki Matsuyama (over to LIV Golf). I don’t mind admitting that. When Hideki won (The Genesis Invitational) in LA, what’s the first thing I did? I said, “Congratulations, Hideki. I’m proud of you, mate.”

Japanese megastar Hideki Matsuyama – what a huge coup in a key market that would be if the Shark can get his man. As for the reports of Anthony Kim making a return to professional golf at this week’s LIV Golf event in Jeddah, Norman stopped (just) short of another revelation.

“Stay tuned, mate. Stay tuned.”