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LIV Golf CEO, Greg Norman, has sensationally claimed that there is a long list of players ready to join the controversial golf tour and that some of the names on the list would “surprise” many people. The 68-year-old has been a driving force behind LIV Golf since it launched last year and has been outspoken about its potential to overtake the PGA Tour as golf’s premier attraction.
Speaking ahead of the fourth LIV event of 2023 in Adelaide, Norman has conceded that more depth is required if the tour is to reach its potential with just 48 players taking part in the 12-event series this year.
Despite the small field, some huge names have made the move to LIV over the past 12 months including Dustin Johnson, Cameron Smith and Brooks Koepka and according to Norman, more will come. The former world number one said:
“We’ve got a long list of players who want to come in. We just don’t have the ability today because players are under contract. But we’ll get to a position where there will be a relegation series and places will start opening up.
It’s incredible the amount of players who want to come on board. It would surprise you how good those names are.”
Mayakoba – Charles Howell III
Tucson – Danny Lee
Orlando – Brooks Koepka
— LIV Golf (@livgolf_league) April 17, 2023
Backing his players
As CEO of LIV, Norman has been very vocal in his support for players who have made the leap and ahead of the Masters earlier this month said that every LIV player who was competing would celebrate together on the 18th green. Now, the Australian is standing up for them in light of the ongoing battle to ensure LIV players can receive world ranking points for their performances in events.
Cameron Smith, one of the most recent additions to the tour, is still inside the world’s top ten thanks to his performances on the PGA Tour last year but other big names have seen themselves slide down the rankings list. Last week, however, a few bounced back into the world’s top 50 after a strong performance from several of them at the Masters.
Brooks Koepka, who won the most recent LIV event in Orlando, led the Masters all the way until the final round but still finished in second place, while Phil Mickelson and Patrick Reed also had positive weeks at Augusta. Talking about the ranking system, Norman labelled it “obsolete” and “not a true reflection on the sport.”
A positive week ahead for LIV
The event in Adelaide this week is the fourth LIV event of 2023 and will be played in front of a sell-out crowd on all three days, vindicating Norman’s belief that their format is popular with fans. Speaking about the future of the tour, Norman said:
‘I knew it would be popular going but I didn’t expect it to this degree to be honest with you. And I look forward to the day when you know, hopefully, everybody’s got to eat crow.
I just know our model is here to stay. It’s not a vindictive attitude or approach or anything like that. It’s my desire to do what is right for the game of golf and what is right for the players, and what is right for the fans that are out here.”
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