DP World Tour Wins Legal Battle Against LIV Golfers

On Thursday morning, the Appeal Panel found that 'the Appellants committed serious breaches of the Code of Behaviour of the DPWT Regulations'

A DP World Tour flag flutters in the wind
(Image credit: Getty Images)

It has been confirmed that the DP World Tour has won February's arbitration hearing against a number of its members who play in LIV Golf.

On Thursday morning, Sport Resolutions confirmed the announcement, which had been made public by The Times on Tuesday, with Sport Resolutions announcing it has upheld the DP World Tour’s conflicting tournament release regulation and its ability to sanction members who breached it. 

Furthermore, appeals brought by those members have been dismissed, making it likely that we will never see the likes of Sergio Garcia, Lee Westwood and Ian Poulter featuring on the DP World Tour, or indeed, the Ryder Cup, ever again.

Appeals had been issued by a number of LIV players, however, the Appeal Panel ultimately found that the Appellants committed serious breaches of the Code of Behaviour of the DPWT Regulations by playing in the LIV Golf Invitational (London) and LIV Portland events respectively, despite their release requests having been refused. 

According to Sport Resolutions: "The appeals were dismissed and each of the Appellants were ordered to pay the fine of £100,000 originally imposed by the PGAET." 

What does this mean for the future of the DP World Tour players then? Well, it doesn't mean that the DP World Tour can ban players and strip them of their membership, but it does mean they can impose sanctions in the forms of fines and suspensions against the relevant players.

What it does mean though, is that it is possible LIV players will now rescind their DP World Tour memberships to avoid further fines and suspensions for competing in LIV events.

Ian Poulter and Lee Westwood at the 2022 LIV Golf London tournament

Ian Poulter and Lee Westwood are just some of the names which will be affected by the recent outcome

(Image credit: Getty Images)

In a statement from the DP World Tour's Chief Executive, Keith Pelley, it reads: "We welcome today’s decision by Sport Resolutions which upholds our regulations and our ability to administer them. We are delighted that the panel recognised we have a responsibility to our full membership to do this and also determined that the process we followed was fair and proportionate.

“In deciding the level of these sanctions last June, we were simply administering the regulations which were created by our members and which each of them signed up to. It is, of course, regrettable that resources, both financial and staffing, which could have been otherwise deployed across our organisation, have been impacted by this lengthy arbitration process.

“However, with the clarity provided by today’s decision, we look forward to continuing to focus on our 2023 global schedule, whilst also continuing to plan for 2024 with the valued support of our many partners and stakeholders. We will now carefully consider the details of today’s decision with our Board, our Tournament Committee and our legal advisors and take the appropriate action in due course.”

Matt Cradock
Staff Writer

Matt joined Golf Monthly in February 2021 covering weekend news, before also transitioning to equipment and testing. After freelancing for Golf Monthly and The PGA for 18 months, he was offered a full-time position at the company in October 2022 and continues to cover weekend news and social media, as well as help look after Golf Monthly’s many buyers’ guides and equipment reviews.

Taking up the game when he was just seven years of age, Matt made it into his county squad just a year later and continues to play the game at a high standard, with a handicap of around 2-4. To date, his best round came in 2016, where he shot a six-under-par 66 having been seven-under through nine holes. He currently plays at Witney Lakes in Oxfordshire and his favourite player is Rory McIlroy, despite nearly being struck by his second shot at the 17th during the 2015 BMW PGA Championship.

Matt’s current What’s In The Bag?

Driver: Honma TW747, 8.75°

Fairway Wood: TaylorMade Rocketballz Stage 2, 15°, 19°

Hybrid: Adams Super Hybrid, 22°

Irons: Mizuno MP54, 5-PW

Wedges: Cleveland 588 RTX 2.0 Tour Satin, 50°, 56°, 60°

Putter: Cleveland TFI 2135 Satin Cero

Ball: Titleist Pro V1x