The world’s main golf competitors has suspended a few of the sport’s largest stars for taking part in a profitable new event run by Saudi Arabia’s Sovereign Wealth Fund.

The US PGA Tour mentioned on Thursday that 17 golfers, together with six-time main winner Phil Mickelson and former world primary Dustin Johnson, weren’t permitted to attend the debut LIV golf occasion on the Centurion Membership outdoors London. The $25mn prize pot is the most important within the recreation.

US PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan mentioned in a letter to members: “These gamers have made their decisions for their very own financial-based causes. However they can not demand PGA Tour membership advantages, views, alternatives and platforms such as you do.

Of the 17 golfers penalized by the PGA for taking part within the LIV, 10 had already resigned their membership.

LIV Golf Investments is managed by the Saudi Public Funding Fund, which has put aside $2bn to reshape the worldwide recreation.

The arrival of LIV is a problem to the PGA Tour’s position because the dominant power in golf. The group has launched a shortened format with new franchise groups competing towards one another, complementing the person competitors. Groups are taking part in for over $250mn in prize cash within the eight-event collection, which LIV is funding with roughly $400mn in seed cash.

Nevertheless, the event’s new collection has been hit by considerations over the supply of its funding as a result of Saudi Arabia’s historical past of human rights violations, whereas senior figures within the sport say the dispute turns right into a authorized battle between LIV and the PGA Tour. ,

LIV Golf mentioned the PGA’s transfer was “retaliatory” and “deepens the divide between the Tour and its members”.

“It’s troubling that the Tour, a corporation devoted to creating alternatives for golfers to play the sport, is a company stopping golfers from taking part in,” LIV mentioned. “It actually is not the final phrase on the topic.”

The game’s largest star Tiger Woods opposed LIV’s efforts to recruit him, whereas Rory McIlroy mentioned this week that the “burden of money” had tempted a few of his rivals to the Saudi-backed group.

LIV’s chief govt, Greg Norman, former world primary, sparked controversy final month when requested concerning the 2019 killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi by Saudi brokers. Norman mentioned on the time, “All of us made errors.”

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