What Does LIV Stand For?

The LIV Golf Invitational Series is the tournament on everyone’s lips, but what does its name mean?

Greg Norman at the LIV Golf Invitational Series London draft on 7 June 2022
(Image credit: Getty Images)

The LIV Golf Invitational Series has barely been out of the headlines since it was launched earlier this year, but while the name of the new tournament has become well-known in recent months, its meaning hasn't.    

It’s perhaps natural to assume that LIV is an acronym, but that’s not the case. Rather, LIV is the Roman numeral for 54, which is what that part of the name really stands for. But why is 54 significant?

In an interview with Sports Illustrated (opens in new tab), the frontman for the Saudi-backed series, Greg Norman, explained its relevance is twofold – one concerns the format of the start-up, and another concerns golf more generally. He said: “It is the Roman numeral for 54, which has two meanings: 54 is the lowest score you could shoot if you were to birdie every hole on a par-72 course, so there is an aspirational aspect to the thinking. It is also the number of holes to be played in each event.”

While the first reason may seem slightly tenuous, the second reason behind the number definitely makes sense. One of the big selling points about the Series is that there are only three rounds of tournament play – meaning 54 holes – rather than the traditional 72. That, and other changes designed to ensure it is more streamlined than a regular golf tournament (such as the smaller field and shotgun starts), have been introduced to add speed and excitement to the game. 

The 54-hole format seems to play into another aim of the Series – to appeal to the younger generation. Certainly, there have been efforts elsewhere to achieve this, with free kids tickets and on-site experiences. Will it work? Only time will tell, although with Norman having confirmed an extra $2bn cash boost to grow the Series in the coming years, there’s certainly a determination to see it succeed.

So, with the LIV Golf Invitational Series likely to continue shaking up the game for the foreseeable future, we now know that not only is the "LIV" part of the name not an acronym, it actually represents a crucial aspect of the Series that Norman hopes will help it become an even bigger deal in the coming years.

Mike Hall
Mike Hall

Mike has 25 years of experience in journalism, including writing on sports such as golf, football and cricket. Now a freelance writer for Golf Monthly, he is dedicated to covering the sport’s most newsworthy stories. Originally from East Yorkshire, Mike now resides in Canada, where the nearest course is less than a mile from his home. It’s there where he remains confident that, one of these days, he’ll play the 17th without finding the water. 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.