LIV rebels give DP World Tour until 5pm to overturn sanctions

by | Jul 1, 2022 | 0 comments

Graeme McDowell and Ian Poulter (Photo by Aitor Alcalde/LIV Golf/Getty Images)

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Sixteen LIV Golf defectors have written to the DP World Tour to have their sanctions for competing in the opening event at Centurion rescinded by 5pm on Friday or they’ll be forced to take legal action.

In a letter first obtained by The Telegraph, the likes of Graeme McDowell and Ian Poulter have threatened legal action following the DP World Tour’s move to fine players £100,000 for competing in the opening LIV Golf event without a release.

Players have also been banned from next week’s Scottish Open and two more co-sanctioned events with the PGA Tour.

The players in question, who have played the majority of their golf on the PGA Tour in recent years anyway, claim the DP World Tour’s move to strengthen its alliance with the PGA Tour by offering its top-10 players cards to the AmericaN circuit each season, “serves only to solidify the DP World Tour as second fiddle to the PGA Tour and depletes the DP World Tour’s top rising talent even further”.

The letter in full, read;

“In Mr Pelley’s latest communication, he uses the statement that every action in life comes with a consequence. We agree, and we are concerned that the actions of the Tour against us, LIV Golf, and golf in general will have adverse consequences on the DP World Tour, a tour and an organisation that, despite our recent interactions, we care deeply for.

“The intention of this letter is not to further divide us, but to respond to Tour statements and to pose questions that the Tour should answer and we should discuss in detail. Instead of spending our time, energy, financial resources, and focus on appeals, injunctions, and lawsuits, we would implore you, the custodians of the DP World Tour, to reconsider your recent penalties and sanctions, and instead focus our energies on forging a path forward that is better for the DP World Tour members and the game of golf.

“To this end, we ask that you rescind your fines and suspensions by 5:00 pm on Friday, July 1, 2022. In addition, we represent over 5 percent of the DP World Tour membership and, under its articles of association, we ask you to convene a meeting of Tour membership to discuss these important matters further. If not, you will leave us  with no choice but to employ the various other means and methods at our disposal to rectify these wrongs.

“We appreciate that the argument being put forward is that the ‘strategic alliance’ with the PGA Tour will provide overall benefit to DP World Tour members – hence the competitive threat to the PGA Tour being treated differently when it comes to releases and other matters.

“To begin with, we do not accept that protecting the PGA Tour through this alliance could in any way justify this disparate treatment. Even if it could, what are these benefits? This a question we have asked for many months.

“Thus far, the option to play the Barracuda Championship instead of the Scottish Open doesn’t appear to be one that benefits the membership at all. Ultimately, approximately 40 DP World Tour members who would have been eligible for the Scottish Open on the DP World tour will now not be eligible, and  instead will only have the option to go and play on the PGA Tour in Kentucky the week before The Open, for less money but at a higher cost to participate.

“In addition, PGA Tour players have been encouraged to play the Scottish Open through a stipend to cover travel costs, but the same benefit is not afforded to DP World Tour  members?! That the DP World Tour top performers will now earn PGA Tour cards serves only to solidify the DP World Tour as second fiddle to the PGA Tour and depletes the DP World Tour’s top rising talent even further. And without regard to  whether this collaboration is lawful, would this collaboration be happening without LIV Golf entering the market?”

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