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The third of eight LIV Golf Series events will get underway later this week, with 48 players set to tee it up at Trump National Golf Club Bedminster, New Jersey.
LIV Golf plans to increase the number of events to 14 next year and maintain a 48-man field, with teams of four competing throughout the season. Sources have revealed to Sports Illustrated that there will be a dramatic overhaul ahead of the third season, including the introduction of promotion, relegation, status and rankings.
Throughout the 2023 season, LIV Golf will maintain a rankings list and players that finish in the top-24 at each tournament will earn points according to the Sports Illustrated report. At the end of the 2023 season, the four players at the bottom of the rankings will be relegated, whilst those in the top-24 will keep their status for the following year.
Team captains may be exempt from relegation, along with other players depending on their contractual agreement with LIV Golf. A relegated captain would still be involved in the management of the team in future.
Relegated players will be reportedly permitted to compete in the International Series, sanctioned by the Asian Tour, as well as on any other Tour they have status. They will also have the opportunity to re-qualify via LIV Golf's own iteration of Q-School, known as the 'Promotions Event'.
Players who are not under contract could lose their playing rights if they are not extended by their respective teams - similar to what is seen in F1. Teams would then select a player they wish to sign to replace those that are dropped.
Any player that is under contract from their team is said to be guaranteed playing rights rather than having to earn sufficient points to finish inside the top-24.
Player contracts haven't been fully disclosed and it is unlikely they will be in future but it would appear that the playing rights of high profile stars such as Dustin Johnson, Phil Mickelson, Brooks Koepka and Bryson DeChambeau will be secure for the foreseeable future.
The Promotions Event is said to take place over three or four days with a potential 36 hole finale. The top-32 of the International Series money list (with the exception of the winner as they receive automatic promotion), Major winners from the last 5 years, reigning amateur champions, the top-75 in the Official World Golf Ranking, members of the last Ryder Cup and Presidents Cup teams and PGA and DP World Tour winners from the previous year are among those exempt into the field.
The top-20 in the first round of the Promotions Event, which is said to consist of a field of up to 100 players, will be joined in the second round by those relegated from the previous season, those ranked between 2-5 of the International Series money list and any player that finished between 25-44 in the prior season rankings who was not re-contracted by a team for the following season.
The top-16 from the second round will play in the last two rounds, with the top-three finishers qualifying for the 2024 LIV Golf season. The fourth spot will be reserved for the winner of the International Series money list.
The promotion and relegation structure is designed in a way to ensure there is a large player pool and so competitors are refreshed each year. This will provide a clear path for players to earn their place in the lucrative events.
James joined Golf Monthly having previously written for other digital outlets. He is obsessed with all areas of the game – from tournament golf, to history, equipment, technique and travel. He is also an avid collector of memorabilia; with items from the likes of Bobby Jones, Tiger Woods, Francis Ouimet, Arnold Palmer, Lee Trevino, Adam Scott and Ernie Els. As well as writing for Golf Monthly, James’ golfing highlight is fist bumping Phil Mickelson on his way to winning the Open Championship at Muirfield in 2013. James grew up on the east coast of England and is the third generation of his golfing family. He now resides in Leeds and is a member of Cobble Hall Golf Club with a handicap index of 1.7. His favourite films are The Legend of Bagger Vance and Tin Cup.
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