The head of Golf Saudi clarified recent comments regarding the possibility of LIV Golf creating its own major championships.
In a story this week in the New Yorker on the Saudi-backed circuit Al Sorour, CEO of the Golf Saudi, discussed how his league would respond should LIV Golf fail to get Official World Golf Ranking accreditation, which would eliminate an avenue for LIV members to compete in the majors. From the piece:
There was speculation that the Masters might ban LIV players. “For now, the majors are siding with the Tour, and I don’t know why,” Sorour said. “If the majors decide not to have our players play? I will celebrate. I will create my own majors for my players.” He went on, “Honestly, I think all the tours are being run by guys who don’t understand business.”
The comments were panned; despite LIV’s opulent payouts and purses, what constitutes a major is not distilled to a dollar sign. However, in a statement Thursday, Sorour said the story “misrepresented” his views while acknowledging his frustration at the “blackballing” of LIV Golf.
“I had a casual conversation with a New Yorker reporter at LIV’s Boston event a few weeks ago, during which I expressed my frustration at the unfortunate blackballing of LIV Golf players by the PGA Tour,” Sorour said in a statement. “When it comes to the majors, tournaments that stand alone and are independent of LIV, I have the utmost respect for the majors. The majors are about history, heritage, true competition and honor.
“The story wrongfully expressed and misrepresented my views. The majors are indeed the best platform where LIV golfers and other tour golfers can compete, despite the PGA Tour’s suspension of our players. As a LIV Golf board member and managing director, I am here to accomplish our LIV Golf investment chairman and the board’s strategic direction by building a team, growing the game and defending player rights. That is my only interest.’’
LIV Golf wraps up its inaugural season with a $50 team championship at Trump Doral next week.