"Things Need to Be Changed," say top PGA Tour players about LIV Golf's poor world ranking.
“Things Need to Be Changed,” say top PGA Tour players about LIV Golf’s poor world ranking.

TOKYO, Japan — When Xander Schauffele looks at the LIV Golf League’s players, he thinks that a number of them deserve to be ranked higher in the game than they are now (in the Official World Golf Ranking).

He thought it was great that the Masters chose to ask Joaquin Niemann, who has won two of the three LIV Golf events this year. Niemann was given a special exemption to play at Augusta National, and on Monday he was given another one for the PGA Championship.

Schauffele, who is currently ranked fifth in the OWGR, thinks that the league wasn’t included because it didn’t follow the rules set fort.

Schauffele told the Bay Hill Club crowds that they didn’t seem to meet the requirements. He was there to play in this week’s Arnold Palmer Invitational. “To be honest, I haven’t read much of it, but it looks like they don’t agree on giving LIV an exception so that they can get World Ranking points.”

LIV Golf announced on Tuesday that it is giving up on its quest to become an OWGR member and is withdrawing the application it made in July 2022. The OWGR said in October of last year that it would not be accepting the bid, and it is still not clear if LIV Golf ever sent in a new one.

In a letter to players, LIV Golf commissioner Greg Norman said that he didn’t trust the OWGR anymore and that even if players were given points, they would be too far away from the current system to be able to get back to being accurate.

When asked if the system is broken, PGA Tour Policy Board member Patrick Cantlay said, “I think the World Rankings has a very specific set of criteria. I don’t know if broken is the right word, but I think there’s been so much uncertainty and change in the last couple of years that things need to be updated or changed.”With all the changes that have happened in the last couple of years, I’m not sure if we’ve made all the important ones.

After studying for a few years, the OWGR updated its method in late 2022 to include a strokes-gained world rating for each player. This rating is used to give points to each player in a certain worldwide tournament.

It also got rid of some point minimums that were put on international tours and the rule that fields could only be rated based on players ranked in the top 200 in the world.

Most of the time, the PGA Tour has the best fields because of the change. Tournaments with full fields get more points than those with limited fields. As a result, only four of the top 50 players in the OWGR are not on the PGA Tour. They are LIV golfers Jon Rahm, Tyrrell Hatton, Brooks Koepka, and Cam Smith.

A lot of people on LIV Golf are upset that players like Dustin Johnson, Bryson DeChambeau, and Talor Gooch are not even in the top 100 in the world.

“That could look like anything, but this is kind of how it is now with no OWGR,” Schauffele said. “It looked like a pretty clear way to start about how it was going to look, but they didn’t meet the requirements.”But there are a lot of really good players on the LIV Tour. Many of them are in the top 10 or 25 players in the world. To me, they are without a doubt the best players in the world, even though they aren’t ranked right now.

The LIV Golf group has said that the major championships should offer straight spots through LIV’s season-long points list or some other collection of tournaments because the OWGR doesn’t show how good their players are.

Still, that seems hard to understand since the OWGR board, which turned down the bid, has members from all four schools.

Cantlay said, “I think that’s up to the majors to choose their fields.” “Of course, the British Open and the U.S. Open are open events, so there are ways to get into them.” The PGA and the Masters are set up in a more invited way. So, it’s up to each contest to decide what the requirements are to get into those events, and I’m not really thinking about that.

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