US Open bosses had a “lengthy dialog” over whether or not to permit LIV Golf rebels to play on this 12 months’s match.
The Saudi-backed breakaway league has divided the sport on the prime degree, with the PGA Tour issuing suspensions to each considered one of its members who took half in final week’s Centurion Membership curtain-raiser.
Its opposition to the enterprise has been clear from the outset – however the stance of the 4 majors has, till now, been much less clear.
Nonetheless, Mike Whan, the USGA’s chief government, revealed on Wednesday that the organisation severely thought-about banning LIV gamers from the Nation Membership.
However when he was requested whether or not he might see it turning into tougher for them to entry the match sooner or later, he replied: “Sure.”
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“We really feel nice duty to this sport and we did sit down and have an extended dialog a few week earlier than the US Open about the place another person performs, what promoter they play it with and would we disqualify them from the occasion,” Whan stated.
“We determined no on that, with all the attention that not all people would agree with our choice.
“Whether or not all of us prefer it or not, in February 30 guys performed for a similar promoter in Saudi Arabia with an appropriate launch from the PGA Tour. For years the DP World Tour has had an occasion there.
“We additionally needed to ask the query that if we put that type of clause in, we must return to 9,300 individuals to see whoever had performed the place.
“Did these individuals disqualify themselves from the championship? The reply to that query isn’t any.”
Among the many claims emanating from the breakaway sequence that it’s “good for the sport”. Nonetheless, Whan admitted he’s sceptical – and insisted the game is in a wholesome place as it’s.
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“If you happen to take a look at any quantity within the sport, I’m unsure it’s been this wholesome in a very long time,” he stated.
“I’m saddened by what’s taking place within the skilled sport, principally as a fan as a result of I like seeing the most effective gamers on the earth coming collectively to play. That is going to fracture that.
“I’ve heard that is good for the sport. From the skin, it appears as if it’s good for a number of of us enjoying the sport. I’m fighting how that is good for the sport.
“The factor that will get me as a former commissioner of the LPGA; you stroll right into a board assembly and it’s gamers. Skilled golf has been, for a very long time, their sport and never a few individuals’s sport. What saddens me is we could get to a degree the place a few individuals maintain the strings.”