Social Media Reacts After WGC Graphic Leaves Out LIV Past Champions

Having previously won the WGC Match Play, Bubba Watson, Dustin Johnson and Ian Poulter weren't included in a list of past champions

An electronic board displays the WGC Match Play logo
(Image credit: Getty Images)

The war between the PGA Tour and LIV Golf has been well documented over the past 12 months, with the Tour banning those who jumped ship to LIV from appearing in their tournaments.

It's obviously caused quite a stir, and now, at the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play, yet more controversy has reared its head when, during the live broadcast on Saturday, a list of past winners of the tournament didn't include Dustin Johnson, Bubba Watson and Ian Poulter, players who were previously on the PGA Tour circuit, but now ply their trade in the LIV Golf League.

In the graphic, we see all the winners from 2011 to 2022 but, if you look closely, you can see that 2010, 2017 and 2018 are missing, years when Poulter, Johnson and Watson secured their WGC victories.

Obviously the tweet caused a huge stir on social media, with many from the golf world voicing their distain at the players being left out. One of the individuals was former Major winner, Steve Elkington, who simply stated: "Wonder why they’re doing this… Showing the players' names who won doesn’t affect anything… does it?"

Former coach to Tiger Woods, Hank Haney, was somewhat more blunt with his response, with the 67-year-old calling it "pathetic but not the least bit surprising." It was also a similar story for Greg Norman Jr, the son of LIV Golf CEO, Greg Norman, who tweeted: "Wow. Do they really not realize that these types of moves are actually counter productive to their intended goals by producing the opposite effect of generating more engagement and discussion for LIV and these omitted champions?"

Other people who responded to the news included Telegraph Sport's golf correspondent, James Corrigan, who tweeted: "I think it's ridiculous," whilst many others called the graphic "petty."

Despite this, there is indeed a golf tournament going on and, we must say, the standard of golf on show has been superb. In the standout Quarter Final match on Saturday afternoon, Rory McIlroy overcame Xander Schauffele on the very last hole, with McIlroy posting a 62 and 64 on Saturday to move into the Semi Finals.

Along with the four-time Major winner, World No.1 Scottie Scheffler made it through day four as he looks to defend his title, whilst Cameron Young and Sam Burns continue their rise up the Rankings, with the American duo both getting over the line to make the Semi Finals for the first time in their careers.

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