'We've All Made Mistakes' - Greg Norman Responds To Saudi Questioning

The LIV Golf CEO fielded intense questioning from journalists over the Saudi-backed series that starts next month

Greg Norman pictured at a press conference
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Greg Norman and his LIV Golf Invitational Series faced intense questioning during a media day at next month's inaugural venue, the Centurion Club, near London where the Australian was asked about the idea of 'sportswashing' and the controversial murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

"Everybody has owned up to it, right? It has been spoken about, from what I've read, going on what you guys reported. Take ownership, no matter what it is," Norman responded. "Look, we've all made mistakes and you just want to learn from those mistakes and how you can correct them going forward."

Norman was then asked about 81 Saudi Arabian citizens being executed in a single day in March. “I got a lot of messages, but quite honestly I look forward, I don’t look back," he said. "I don’t look into the politics of things. I know the mission I have as CEO of LIV Golf and that’s how we can grow the game globally. I’m not going to get into the quagmire of whatever happens in someone else’s world. I heard about it and I just kept moving on."

"This whole thing about Saudi Arabia and Khashoggi and human rights, talk about it, but also talk about the good the country is doing to change its culture. There are not many countries that can stand up and be proud of that. They can't be proud of their past - there are a lot of countries in this world that have a cross to bear too - but they are looking after the younger generation."

“I’m not going down this road guys," Norman then said after further questioning. "Let’s just stay focused on the golf. That’s all I’m going to do."

He previously said "I do not answer to Saudi Arabia. I do not answer to MBS [Saudi Crown Prince, Mohammed bin Salman]," in an interview with Sky Sports, where he said Saudi Arabia is "changing their culture within their country."

The LIV Golf Invitational Series gets underway next month at the Centurion Club where a 48-man field will play for a huge purse of $25m. The LIV Golf Invitational Series schedule will see eight tournaments with a season-ending Team Championship taking place at Trump National Doral in Miami, Florida.

As it stands, the field for the first event is still unknown and doubts have been cast over the high profile names rumoured to be playing after both the PGA and DP World Tours declined release requests from its players to feature in the event. Big names linked with the series so far include the likes of Phil Mickelson, Sergio Garcia and Lee Westwood, with dozens of PGA and DP World Tour players said to have made release requests.

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