Rory McIlroy Calls For PGA Tour And European Tour To Merge

The World No.1 wants more cohesion in the game, starting with a merger between the European and PGA Tours

Rory McIlroy Calls For PGA Tour And European Tour To Merge
(Image credit: Getty Images)

The World No.1 wants more cohesion in the game, starting with a merger between the European and PGA Tours

Rory McIlroy Calls For PGA Tour And European Tour To Merge

Rory McIlroy returns to action this week at the Charles Schwab Challenge as the PGA Tour resumes its 2020 season after a three month break due to the global Coronavirus pandemic.

The World No.1 is also a member of the European Tour and it's still another six weeks until play gets underway at the British Masters, the first event back in Europe.

In his pre-Charles Schwab Challenge press conference, Rory conceded that he is worried about his home tour, which has had to reduce prize funds due to declining revenues amid the pandemic.

"Of course I'm concerned," McIlroy said.

"It's not great when they're having to do things and they're taking such a financial hit because of the coronavirus and this pandemic.

"So am I concerned? Yes. But I don't know what else I can do.

"I don't feel like I'm responsible for the health of the Tour. I'm a player; I play on the Tour and I'm very grateful for the opportunity that they've provided me over the years."

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Related: How to watch the Charles Schwab Challenge

The four-time Major winner, who has won three Race to Dubai titles and 14 European Tour events, also called for the PGA Tour and European Tour to merge.

"I think this pandemic has highlighted the fact that the game of golf at the highest level needs to be simplified.

"I think there's too many funnels, there's too many channels. I don't know if everything being under one umbrella is the solution, but definitely fewer umbrellas I think is a way forward.

"I would be [keen for a European-PGA Tour merger]. I've sort of been calling for it for a while. Yeah, I would like to see that.

"I think for the health of both tours, a world tour is something I've always wanted, but it had to be done the right way.

"I think the PGL coming in and trying to do it their way wasn't the right thing, so trying to make changes from within the game already and not letting an outsider come in is the right way to do it, so I'd be supportive of that for sure."

Related: McIlroy dismisses Premier Golf League - "I'm out"

He also suggested both tours allowing members to earn points for the FedEx Cup and Race to Dubai in certain events.

"I'd say tours consolidating, whether it's some European Tour events offering FedExCup points and some PGA Tour events offering Race to Dubai points, I don't know, but yeah, just a little bit more cohesion, and then I think, as well, trying to figure out the schedule going forward this year.

"The major bodies, so USGA, R&A, Masters [Augusta National Golf Club], PGA of America, whatever it is, they're thinking about one or two weeks a year, and I think speaking to the PGA Tour, speaking to the European Tour, having everyone together and trying to figure this out has definitely opened some people's eyes to what actually goes on and how many moving parts there is.

"So I think the more that all these bodies can sort of work together for the greater good of game can only be a good thing."

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Elliott Heath
News Editor

Elliott Heath is our News Editor and has been with Golf Monthly since early 2016 after graduating with a degree in Sports Journalism. He manages the Golf Monthly news team as well as our large Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages. He covered the 2022 Masters from Augusta National as well as five Open Championships on-site including the 150th at St Andrews. His first Open was in 2017 at Royal Birkdale, when he walked inside the ropes with Jordan Spieth during the Texan's memorable Claret Jug triumph. He has played 35 of our Top 100 golf courses, with his favourites being both Sunningdales, Woodhall Spa, Western Gailes, Old Head and Turnberry. He has been obsessed with the sport since the age of 8 and currently plays off of a six handicap. 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: Titleist TSi2

Hybrids: Titleist 816 H1

Irons: Mizuno MP5 5-PW

Wedges: Cleveland RTX ZipCore 50, 54, 58

Putter: Odyssey White Hot OG #5

Ball: Srixon Z Star XV