On Thursday in an exclusive with the Guardian, Amnesty International, which is the world's leading human rights organisation, criticised Greg Norman's recent controversial comments about the murder of Jamal Khashoggi calling them “wrong and seriously misguided".
Now, LIV Golf Investments have responded to the remarks, with a statement to Golf Monthly reading: “The killing of Jamal Khashoggi was reprehensible. Everyone agrees about that, including Greg and he has said as such previously on many occasions. Greg also knows that golf is a force for good around the world and can help make inroads toward positive change. That is why he is so excited about LIV and that was the point he was making.”
Speaking at the media day at Centurion Club on Wednesday, Norman had faced intense questioning about the murder of Khashoggi at a Saudi Arabian consulate in 2018, as well as the idea of 'sportswashing'.
"Everybody has owned up to it, right? It has been spoken about, from what I've read, going on what you guys reported. Take ownership, no matter what it is," Norman responded. "Look, we've all made mistakes and you just want to learn from those mistakes and how you can correct them going forward."
Following the remarks on Wednesday, Felix Jakens, Amnesty UK’s head of campaigns, told the Guardian: “Greg Norman’s remarks that the Saudi government’s brutal murder of Khashoggi and its attempted cover-up were a ‘mistake’ are wrong and seriously misguided. Far from trying to ‘move on’, the Saudi authorities have attempted to sweep their crimes under the carpet, avoiding justice and accountability at every turn.
Jakens then also went on to explain the regime's human rights record, the dire situation for LGBTI+ people and how the series "is yet one more event in a series of sportswashing exercises that the Saudi authorities are using to clean its blood-soaked image."
The first LIV Golf Invitational Series is set to get underway at Centurion Club on the 9th - 11th June, although it is still uncertain who will be playing after the PGA declined its members releases and the DP World Tour reportedly doing the same.
Robert Garrigus was the first known PGA Tour player to formally submit a request to the Tour to compete in the Series. The American was then later joined by Sergio Garcia, Lee Westwood, Richard Bland, Martin Kaymer and Phil Mickelson, who have all publicly requested permission to play at Centurion in June.
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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
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