Ian Poulter Blasts "Embarrassing" Popov LPGA Exemption Situation

Both Ian Poulter and Tommy Fleetwood have come out in defence of Sophia Popov after it was revealed she has not yet received a five year exemption to the LPGA Tour

Ian Poulter Blasts "Embarrassing" Popov LPGA Exemption Situation
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Both Ian Poulter and Tommy Fleetwood have come out in defence of Sophia Popov after it was revealed she has not yet received a five year exemption to the LPGA Tour

Ian Poulter Blasts "Embarrassing" Popov LPGA Exemption Situation

The golfing world was shocked to hear that Women's Open champion Sophia Popov is currently not set to receive a five year exemption on the LPGA Tour.

The German was not an LPGA Tour member at the time of her victory, meaning she does not earn job security on the premier women's golf tour for five years...despite winning a Major championship.

Popov will only be exempt until the end of next season as things stand, and she is also not exempt into the ANA Inspiration and US Women's Open.

She described the situation as "tough" and said she "got a little bit frustrated."

Ian Poulter is furious after reading the original report from Golf.com, saying that it is embarrassing to the LPGA Tour and the game of golf as a whole.

"This story is absolutely embarrassing to the @LPGA and quite frankly embarrassing to the game of golf," the Ryder Cup legend tweeted.

"Somebody wake up and figure this out. To the best story in golf for a very long time to the worst story in a few days."

Poulter's fellow 2018 European Ryder Cupper Tommy Fleetwood described it as "stupid."

"As golfers we all dream of being a major champion @SophiaCPopov congratulations on such a special achievement!! @LPGA rule is stupid to say the least. The way you’re playing though you won’t have to worry about it," Fleetwood wrote on social media.

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Thomas Bjorn and Luke Donald also called on the LPGA Tour to change the rule.

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Let's hope the LPGA Tour sees sense and gives Popov a five year exemption.

Related: Sophia Popov What's in the bag?

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Elliott Heath
Senior Staff Writer

Elliott Heath is our Senior Staff Writer and has been with Golf Monthly since early 2016 after graduating with a degree in Sports Journalism. He manages the Golf Monthly news, features, courses and travel sections as well as our large Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages. Elliott has interviewed some huge names in the golf world including Sergio Garcia, Thomas Bjorn, Bernd Wiesberger and Scotty Cameron as well as a number of professionals on the DP World and PGA Tours. He covered the 2022 Masters from Augusta National as well as four Open Championships on-site including the 150th at St Andrews. He has played 35 of our Top 100 golf courses, with his favourites being both Sunningdales, Woodhall Spa, Old Head and Turnberry. He has been obsessed with the sport since the age of 8 and currently plays at West Byfleet Golf Club in Surrey, where his handicap index floats anywhere between 2-6. His golfing highlights are making albatross on the 9th hole on the Hotchkin Course at Woodhall Spa, shooting an under-par round, playing in the Aramco Team Series on the Ladies European Tour and making his one and only hole-in-one at the age of 15 - a long time ago now!


Elliott is currently playing:


Driver: Titleist TSR4

3 wood: TaylorMade SIM2 Max

Hybrid: TaylorMade SIM Max

Irons: Mizuno MP5 4-PW

Wedges: Cleveland RTX ZipCore 50, 54, 58

Putter: Odyssey White Hot OG #5

Ball: Titleist Pro V1x