March 7, 2024

Justin Thomas opens up on relationship between PGA Tour players and LIV Golf rivals | Golf | Sport

Justin Thomas has opened up about the ‘weird’ vibes between PGA Tour stars and LIV Golf players. He spoke about the relationship in the Netflix show Full Swing’s second series, where cameras followed top golfers during the 2023 season.

In the first episode out on Wednesday, Thomas – who has won two majors – talked about how things were with the golfers who joined LIV Golf in 2022.

Thomas, who is 23rd in the world golf rankings, admitted there was a bit of tension. “The relationship between Tour guys and LIV guys is weird,” he shared.

“It has got a little chipper and chipper. There are plenty of guys that have gone to that tour that I didn’t talk to before and I still have no desire to talk to. It’s not because of that decision, it just may help with it a little bit.”

Since Thomas’ recorded interview, the golf world has seen big changes. The PGA Tour and the group behind LIV Golf, Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF), have agreed to work together.

After the framework agreement was announced in June, tensions between the two tours have softened – particularly from the players’ point of view – although talks between the PGA Tour and LIV continue and a deal has yet to be signed off.

LIV’s inception in 2022 was a turbulent time in the sport, with players on both sides of the divide throwing barbs back and forth. Phil Mickelson made headlines by firing parting shots at the PGA Tour on his way out, frustrating his former rivals.

Meanwhile, Rory McIlroy became the PGA Tour’s de facto spokesman, criticising LIV Golf and calling out its effect on the game.

But the June announcement has seen a big change with players’ tensions easing off. Dustin Johnson and Brooks Koepka, who moved to LIV, feature in Full Swing’s second series, with the latter the only LIV player to compete in the Ryder Cup in Rome last October.

Koepka appeared to be welcomed into the US team without any drama, emphasising the change in rhetoric.


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