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The ambition of LIV Golf to have its Series granted Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR) points has taken a new twist with 50 of its players - including all 48 who appeared in last week's Chicago tournament - sending a letter to OWGR chairman Peter Dawson pleading for it to receive the status.
Video: What Is LIV Golf?
The players begin the letter by stating: “Your stewardship has ensured the Official World Golf Ranking status as one of the most respected institutions in sports. As the athletes who are ranked, we depend on OWGR not just to qualify for the most important events, including the Majors and Olympics, but to tell us where we stand among our peers. Trust in the OWGR has been widespread and well-deserved.” The letter then urges Dawson to include LIV Golf’s events in the ranking calculations on a retroactive basis.
The letter comes after LIV Golf CEO Greg Norman said that he believed the OWGR should fold or include LIV Golf, and the players who have signed the letter are equally confident of the merits of LIV Golf to be included, saying: “Some 23 tours are integrated into the OWGR universe, and LIV has earned its place among them.” It also argues that the current impasse is not only harmful to LIV Golf players, but the OWGR too. It says: “Every week that passes without the inclusion of LIV athletes undermines the historical value of OWGR.”
The authors of the letter also raise what they see as a potential conflict of interest with members of the OWGR’s Governing Board. It says: “The case for LIV’s inclusion is strong, but we have concerns that members of your Governing Board are conflicted and are keeping the OWGR from acting as it should. Four of the eight members have connections to the PGA Tour, which unfortunately views LIV Golf as an antagonist."
Recently, there have been suggestions that the decision on whether to grant LIV Golf OWGR status has been deliberately slowed down, and that's something the letter also addresses, saying: "We hope the story we read today about the decision being slow walked so LIV golfers will slide down and to harm LIV is not accurate. We call on you to render a positive decision quickly – for the benefit of the integrity of the rankings, the game and all of us who love the sport."
LIV Golf currently has four former World No.1s, and the current World No.3 Cameron Smith. However, without OWGR status, it will be difficult for the players to maintain their rankings, which could soon affect their eligibility for some Majors.
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Mike has over 25 years of experience in journalism, including writing on a range of sports throughout that time, such as golf, football and cricket. Now a freelance staff writer for Golf Monthly, he is dedicated to covering the game's most newsworthy stories.
He has written hundreds of articles on the game, from features offering insights into how members of the public can play some of the world's most revered courses, to breaking news stories affecting everything from the PGA Tour and LIV Golf to developmental Tours and the amateur game.
Mike grew up in East Yorkshire and began his career in journalism in 1997. He then moved to London in 2003 as his career flourished, and nowadays resides in New Brunswick, Canada, where he and his wife raise their young family less than a mile from his local course.
Kevin Cook’s acclaimed 2007 biography, Tommy’s Honour, about golf’s founding father and son, remains one of his all-time favourite sports books.
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