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The PGA Tour and DP World Tour have announced a joint venture partnership that will see the two organisations strengthen their strategic alliance over the next 13 years as they bid to counter the threat posed by the Saudi-backed LIV Golf Invitational Series.
The news comes after Golf Monthly reported the two powerhouses were in advanced negotiations two weeks ago. One of the most significant moves of the arrangement will see the leading ten players on the end-of-season DP World Tour Rankings earn PGA Tour cards for the following season, in addition to those already exempt, from 2023.
Other key points include the DP World Tour guaranteeing growth in annual prize funds to its membership for the next five years. Meanwhile, there will also be the establishment of a clearly defined path for players to join the DP World Tour from the Sunshine Tour and ISPS Handa PGA Tour of Australasia. The PGA Tour will also increase its stake in European Tour Productions from 15 to 40 percent.
Reflecting on the move, DP World Tour CEO Keith Pelley said: “Building on the success of the existing Strategic Alliance between ourselves and the PGA Tour, this move will significantly enhance the meritocracy that has successfully served the professional game on both sides of the Atlantic for more than 50 years.
"It is a natural extension and progression of what we have been doing over the past few years and I passionately believe that this move is the right thing for our players, our Tour, our fans, and the game of golf in general. Our two tours have undoubtedly drawn closer over the past few years and today’s announcement strengthens both Tours for the betterment of both memberships.”
PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan said: “It was clear from the outset that our Strategic Partnership with the European Tour Group was a powerful agreement for both sides, and we are thrilled with today’s announcement of this expanded partnership.
"We will continue to collaborate on a global schedule and key commercial areas as we draw our organizations and memberships even closer together while innovating to provide the most entertaining and compelling golf possible to fans around the world. On behalf of the PGA Tour, I want to credit and commend Keith Pelley and his team at the European Tour Group for their incredible commitment to this effort.”
Last week, the PGA Tour unveiled huge prize money increases to persuade its best players to remain on the Tour rather than defect to the Saudi-backed Series. Meanwhile, the intentions of the DP World Tour had been less clear. Although LIV Golf players were permitted to take part in the recent BMW International Open, the DP World Tour then announced a series of sanctions for the LIV Golf rebels, including fines of £100,000 and exclusion from the Genesis Scottish Open, Barbasol Championship and Barracuda Championship, which are all co-sanctioned by the DP World Tour and PGA Tour.
Clarity has finally arrived with today's announcement. The wide-ranging joint venture will run until 2035 as the power struggle at the top of the game continues.
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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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