'There's Plenty Of Keyboard Warriors' - LIV Pro Slams 'Exhibition' Critics

Matt Jones insists that, if anything, players are working harder with LIV Golf than on the PGA Tour

Matt Jones takes a shot at the LIV Golf Bangkok tournament
(Image credit: Getty Images)

The inaugural season of LIV Golf has sparked plenty of debate. While many people have focused on the huge amounts of money on offer to players, the 54-hole no-cut format has also received criticism, with some people suggesting the tournaments amount to little more than exhibitions.

Video: What Is LIV Golf?

However, one LIV Golf player has dismissed the suggestion. Australian Matt Jones, who played in all seven of the Saudi-backed venture’s regular events, described the critics as “keyboard warriors” while speaking to AAP Sport. He said: “I would say don't speak until you've come out here and experienced it. There's plenty of keyboard warriors out there who sit behind a computer and judge everything people do for a living without getting out and experiencing it. If there's people judging this from what they see on YouTube and LIV TV, it would be better to come out here and experience it."

It's not just outsiders who have pointed out the LIV Golf format and schedule is less intense than other tours. For example, after he was unveiled as one of LIV Golf’s marquee signings before June’s opening tournament in London, Dustin Johnson said: "The whole reason I started playing on LIV is to play less golf and not more”. 

While each LIV Golf tournament runs for three days instead of four, and there are fewer tournaments, Jones says that allows the players to work harder off the course. He said: “I've seen guys grinding harder here than they do on the PGA Tour because we have the time. You can spend more time in the gym, getting fit, because our bodies aren't getting pounded week after week."

Aside from the extra time players have to prepare for tournaments, Jones also insists that the financial incentives are acting as a catalyst for a more competitive spirit. He said: "Financially, there's so much to gain from playing well out here. There are livelihoods at stake. There are guys on one-year contracts playing for next year. No one's coming out for a hit and giggle. It's serious and guys want to win every week.”

Each of LIV Golf's seven regular events had a purse of $25m. Next week, the season concludes with a $50m knockout Team Championship before expanding from eight to 14 tournaments in 2023. 

Mike Hall
News Writer

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.