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Matt Fitzpatrick wants LIV Golf defectors banned for life from PGA Tour

Count Matt Fitzpatrick among those who never want to see LIV Golf defectors on the PGA Tour again.

Fitzpatrick, the reigning U.S. Open champion, believes any player who defected to LIV Golf should receive a lifetime ban from the PGA and not be allowed back, even if their LIV contracts run out.

“I would not let them back,” Fitzpatrick, 28, said on Barstool’s “Fore Play” podcast. “You made your choice. In my opinion, you made your choice to jump ship because you think there’s a better product out there, so that’s why you’ve gone. I don’t think you should be allowed back.

“My thing is, you wanted to go play somewhere for more money, less events, for all the reasons that they give. So why should you be allowed to come back and take someone else’s spot who’s committed to the PGA Tour? That would be my argument.”

Matt Fitzpatrick wants LIV Golf players to be banned for life from the PGA Tour.
Matt Fitzpatrick wants LIV Golf players to be banned for life from the PGA Tour.

As LIV Golf was set to tee off with its first event last June, PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan said in a memo that all current and future LIV Golf players were banned from PGA Tour-sanctioned events.

Among those who took the guaranteed millions from the Saudi-backed league are Phil Mickelson, Dustin Johnson, Brooks Koepka, Bryson DeChambeau, Sergio Garcia, and Cameron Smith.

Some of them reportedly inked nine-figure contracts with the Greg Norman-led LIV.

Golf writer Alan Shipnuck wrote in a Q&A last month that he heard “rumblings” Koepka had “buyer’s remorse” when it came to his decision to leave for LIV.

Several LIV golfers filed an antitrust lawsuit against the PGA Tour, which LIV Golf itself joined in August, and the Tour filed a countersuit in September accusing LIV Golf of “tortious interference.”

Phil Mickelson during LIV Golf's event at Mayakoba in Mexico on Feb. 24, 2023.
Phil Mickelson during LIV Golf’s event at Mayakoba in Mexico on Feb. 24, 2023.

“My personal view is that you can’t have your cake and eat it,” Fitzpatrick said in separate comments to Sky Sports News ahead of The Players Championship. “… “Don’t get me wrong, they could turn around and say you can come and play LIV if you want, but I don’t want to do that. I want to stay here and I want to play DP World Tour and PGA Tour.

“I think it is incredibly unfair for the PGA Tour to do that [allow them back] and I would be staggered if they did allow them. I think if you spoke to Tiger Woods then he would probably have the same stance, although I don’t know what other guys would have.”45

LIV Golf began its 2023 season two weeks ago in Mexico, with its next event set for Tuscon, Ariz. next weekend.

LIV has 12 additional events scheduled for the rest of the year.

Source : NYPost