Despite opposition among the likes of Rory McIlroy and Brooks Koepka, those backing the proposed breakaway Premier Golf League (PGL) remain determined that the radical new-look tour will take place.
PGL is planning to attract 48 players to compete in 18 tournaments while seeking to attract such players as Phil Mickelson, Adam Scott, Henrik Stenson, Justin Rose, Rickie Fowler and Paul Casey.
The PGL is being backed by the New York-based Raine Group with Raine indicating in July it was pushing ahead with plans for a PGL.
And in latest news, Majed Al Sorour, CEO of Golf Saudi indicated that the PGL intends continuing to push ahead despite resistance from the long-time professional administrators of the game.
“It is still in negotiation,” Al Sorour said in the Scotsman newspaper.
“You will have resistance from different places but I think it is a really great idea. It doesn’t have to be bad or good. It is something creative that we think is going to be the new world of golf eventually. We are still thinking it is the right way to go.”
And Al Sorour confirmed the third edition of the Saudi International will be going ahead early next year with Graeme McDowell certain to return as defending champion.
“We have already been speaking to the players who have played here in the past – Dustin Johnson, Brooks Kopeka, Patrick Reed and Phil Mickelson to have them return in 2021, ” Al Sorour said.
“I have been speaking with them almost on a weekly basis and we have been doing everything we can do to make people feel comfortable.
“One of the phone calls we had recently was with (2020 U.S. Open champion) Bryson DeChambeau. He thinks he’s going to be No 1 in the world, which I really hope happens, and he is also hoping to come. We will have a great field.
“The kingdom is opening on 1 January for everyone to come back. At the same time, we have been very careful and conscious of this pandemic. We need to create these ‘bubbles’ where we can make players feel confident and safe.
“Once they are in the city, it will be easy for people to feel isolated as we will have no spectators for this event. We then hope everything goes back to normal with fans in years to come.”