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Players Who Join Super Golf League Likely To Be Banned

By: | Wed 05 May 2021 | Comments

LIKE the ill-fated European Football League, the proposed Super Golf League appears to be dead in the water. 

A host of top players, including Rory McIlroy and Webb Simpson have already said they are not interested, and the final nail in the coffin was surely delivered with the news that the PGA Tour and European Tour are "aligned in opposing" renewed plans for a Super Golf League, with players who sign up facing suspension from the Tour.

Dustin Johnson and Justin Rose are among a number of top golfers believed to have been offered huge financial incentives to join the Saudi-backed SGL, but with the threat of expulsion from the PGA Tour hanging over their heads there is surely no chance of them defecting, especially as it would also rule them out of the majors and the Ryder Cup.

European Tour chief executive Keith Pelley has condemned the plans, while also revealing that the main investors behind the SGL had made "a very compelling offer" to take over the European Tour.

"We are aligned with the PGA Tour in opposing, in the strongest possible terms, any proposal for an alternative golf league,” Pelley said in a statement. "Since the launch of our strategic alliance last November, our two organisations have been working together to make global golf less fractured and not create further division, with the interests of all players and fans at the forefront of our thinking."

Justin Rose

Plans for a Premier Golf League were first mooted last year, but McIlroy said he had no interest in joining, although he admitted that he was first approached to discuss a "breakaway" tour towards the end of the 2014 season.

"The more I've thought about it, the more I don't like it," said McIlroy. "I read a thing the other day where it said if you take the money they can tell you what to do, so if you don't take the money, they can't tell you what to do. I've never been one for being told what to do, and I like to have that autonomy and freedom over my career, and I feel like I would give that up by going to play this other league.

"For me, I'm out. My position is I'm against it until there may come a day that I can't be against it. If everyone else goes, I might not have a choice, but at this point, yeah, I don't like what they're proposing."

The Super Golf League plans were apparently put on hold when tournament golf was shut down by the coronavirus pandemic, but it has resurfaced. 

Former US Open champion Webb Simpson has described the proposals as "pretty far-fetched".

"It's been an interesting couple of years with this other league," said Simpson. "I don't really get into the details at all, I let my agent handle everything, but from the beginning it seemed like something that seems pretty far-fetched to actually happen, to come in and shake up the way golf has always been.

"I don't have any up-to-date information, I guess, as to how it's progressed in the last couple of months. I haven't talked really about it since The Players Championship. I love the PGA Tour. It's given me an incredible opportunity these last 12 years of my life.

"It's hard for me to believe that it's really going to happen and the guys will really jump ship and go to a completely different way of golf than we've always had."

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