One of the biggest events of the DP World Tour is set to be the latest battleground in the ongoing war between LIV Golf and the PGA Tour.
At Monday’s meeting, DP Tour CEO Keith Bailey answered questions from defectors from LIV – including former European Ryder Cup team members Lee Westwood, Ian Poulter and Sergio Garcia, according to reports.
These four make up some of the 18 players from the Saudi-backed league who will play in the BMW PGA Championship in Surrey, England this week.
LIV has already felt its impact through the Wentworth Club – after the tour wrapped up its fourth event at The International Course outside Boston.
After this event, a chartered plane from Bay State flew to the UK for the aforementioned meeting- with telegraph Report DP World Tour Expect uncomfortable scenes.
Keith Bailey, CEO of Euro Tour, met with LIV golfers on Monday ahead of the BMW PGA
With only 10 hours to go between Dustin Johnson heading toward Eagle to finish the LIV Boston event and meeting the next day in England, the players have all arrived in time on the charter flight.
Allegedly at that meeting, Westwood, Garcia, Poulter and Co. attempted to force Pelley to reveal details of the European Tour’s ‘strategic alliance’ with the PGA Tour – as well as any issues regarding sanctions for post-US LIV golfers. Circuit court ruling.
But Bailey has stepped in – as the DP World Tour has its own upcoming court case with LIV players looking to rescind the $100,000 fines and suspension issued in June.
‘KP hit well,’ one of the Tour players told Telegraph Sport. “Hold his ground and handle it with confidence.”
European Tour vets, Ian Poulter (left) and Lee Westwood (right), joined LIV Golf earlier this year.
However, one LIV player felt differently about the meeting, saying that Bailey’s answers weren’t always satisfactory.
“We didn’t get as many questions as we wanted,” the player said, and Keith continued to reply, “We’re in the middle of an ongoing legal case, so I can’t give you an answer.”
He also said the DP World Tour was a route to the PGA Tour, but he didn’t say “the Feeding Tour”. At least, his answers are now written.
The report states that Westwood did not give his opinion on the meeting, but did comment on the relations between the European Tour and the PGA Tour in an interview with Golf Digest last week.
One point from that interview was Westwood’s disgust with a new provision awarding PGA Tour cards to the top 10 Pros at the end of the DP World Tour season.
Poulter and Westwood played on the European Tour and both criticized recent moves
“I mean, what company or organization gives away its top 10 assets at the end of every year — especially to a competitor or competitor?” Westwood said.
I’m not convinced by the strategic alliance because I’ve seen how the PGA Tour has behaved over the years. There was not much “give”. They have always been bullies.
I’ve told Keith and other members of his board how this will all go for 12 months now. I told him getting into bed with the PGA Tour was a mistake.
Westwood and other LIV golfers say the DP Tour should have had a Saudi bid made in 2021 that would have positioned the European Tour as a contender for the PGA Tour – with more than $1 billion in Saudi investment.
Billy (left) doesn’t exactly take walk orders from PGA Tour leader Jay Monahan (right) but uses a similar tone when it comes to dealing with the LIV Golf Rebels.
However, commenting on the offer, Bailey told participants in June that the deal was ‘material…not a good deal for the European Tour…the numbers have not been close to those being reported in the media and in the players’ restroom for the past two months.’
The friction is only set to intensify later this week when the BMA PGA Championship kicks off on Thursday.
Rory McIlroy has an awkward encounter with some of his old Ryder Cup teammates, who have jumped ship.
“If you believe in something, I think you should speak up, and I believe very strongly in that,” McIlroy said. I hate what you do in golf. I hate that. I really.
It would be hard for me to bear to go to Wentworth and see 18 of them there. This just doesn’t sit right with me.
“I think what I’m saying is the right thing, and I think when you believe what you’re saying is the right thing, you’re happy to tell yourself the line.”
Martin Kaymer was one of 19 LIV Golf players on the field for the tournament this week, but the two-time main champ decided to pull out of the event because he insisted he didn’t want to play somewhere “unwelcome”.
While DP tour officials have asked LIV Golfers to refrain from wearing LIV logos on their clothing at the Wentworth Club.