Ryder Cup: Rory McIlroy believes LIV players will miss being involved with Team Europe in Rome

Team Europe looking to regain the Ryder Cup after their record-breaking 19-9 loss in 2021; Five of Europe’s line-up in Whistling Straits have since joined LIV Golf and won’t feature this week in Rome; Watch live on Friday from 6am on Sky Sports Golf

Last Updated: 27/09/23 10:06am


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Rory McIlroy say its ‘certainly strange’ not having Ryder Cup veterans Sergio Garcia, Lee Westwood and Ian Poulter around and it’ll really hit them this week.

Rory McIlroy say its ‘certainly strange’ not having Ryder Cup veterans Sergio Garcia, Lee Westwood and Ian Poulter around and it’ll really hit them this week.

Rory McIlroy believes the Ryder Cup stalwarts who joined LIV Golf will miss representing Team Europe more than their absence is felt this week, although admits it’s “strange” not having them in Rome.

Five of Europe’s line-up heavily beaten at Whistling Straits in 2021 have since joined the LIV Golf League, with record points scorer Sergio Garcia and stalwarts Ian Poulter and Lee Westwood all having no role in this year’s contest at Marco Simone Golf Club.

The likes of Martin Kaymer, Graeme McDowell and Henrik Stenson – all vice-captains in past Ryder Cups – have all also joined LIV since its launch last summer, with McIlroy believing that this week’s event could make those who moved to the Saudi-backed circuit realise the consequences of their decision.

As Team Europe prepare to take on Team USA in the Ryder Cup at Marco Simone Golf & Country Club, take a look at the best shots from his six appearances in the competition.

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As Team Europe prepare to take on Team USA in the Ryder Cup at Marco Simone Golf & Country Club, take a look at the best shots from his six appearances in the competition.

As Team Europe prepare to take on Team USA in the Ryder Cup at Marco Simone Golf & Country Club, take a look at the best shots from his six appearances in the competition.

“It’s certainly a little strange not having them around,” McIlroy admitted in his pre-tournament press conference. “But I think this week of all weeks, it’s going to hit home with them that they are not here.

“I think they are going to miss being here more than we’re missing them, so it’s just more I think this week is a realisation that the decision that they made has led to not being a part of this week, and that’s tough.

Rory McIlroy receives the biggest cheer as the players head out on to the course at the Marco Simone Golf and Country Club for practice ahead of the Ryder Cup.

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Rory McIlroy receives the biggest cheer as the players head out on to the course at the Marco Simone Golf and Country Club for practice ahead of the Ryder Cup.

Rory McIlroy receives the biggest cheer as the players head out on to the course at the Marco Simone Golf and Country Club for practice ahead of the Ryder Cup.

“The landscape in golf is ever-changing and more dynamic, and we’ll see what happens and whether they will be part of it in the future. I always thought leading up to this week is when it’s going to hit home that they are not going to be here.”

Garcia enquired earlier this month about paying outstanding DP World Tour fines in an attempt to represent Europe this week, although it was irrelevant as the Spaniard – along with Westwood and Poulter – were ineligible because of withdrawing their DP World Tour membership earlier in the year.

Live Ryder Cup Golf

September 28, 2023, 3:00pm

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Europe have four rookies in their team this year and three more playing their first Ryder Cup on home soil, leaving McIlroy and Justin Rose as the most experienced in the line-up, although the four-time major champion is excited with the potential of Luke Donald’s side.

“Everyone knows this is a bit of a transitional period for the European Team and there’s people that have been part of The European Team for a long time that aren’t here this week,” McIlroy added.

US Open champion Wyndham Clark explains comments he made where he said he was better than Rory McIlroy saying that every player needs the mindset that they are the best to be ale to succeed in golf.

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US Open champion Wyndham Clark explains comments he made where he said he was better than Rory McIlroy saying that every player needs the mindset that they are the best to be ale to succeed in golf.

US Open champion Wyndham Clark explains comments he made where he said he was better than Rory McIlroy saying that every player needs the mindset that they are the best to be ale to succeed in golf.

“I think the guys that we brought in are going to be awesome. Nicolai [Hojgaard], Ludwig [Åberg], Bob [MacIntyre], that’s the future of our team and the future of the Ryder Cup.”

Rose: Team Europe in ‘transitional period’

Rose makes his seventh Ryder Cup appearance, having missed out on a place in Padraig Harrington’s side two years ago, with the Englishman believing this week can go a long way in building the future of Team Europe.

As Team Europe prepare to take on Team USA in the Ryder Cup at Marco Simone Golf & Country Club, take a look at Justin Rose's best shots from his previous five Ryder Cup appearances.

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As Team Europe prepare to take on Team USA in the Ryder Cup at Marco Simone Golf & Country Club, take a look at Justin Rose’s best shots from his previous five Ryder Cup appearances.

As Team Europe prepare to take on Team USA in the Ryder Cup at Marco Simone Golf & Country Club, take a look at Justin Rose’s best shots from his previous five Ryder Cup appearances.

“There’s a lot of winning culture still in the team, with the people in and around the team, the captain and the vice captains,” Rose said. “Luke [Donald] has got an incredible Ryder Cup record, the most winning from a percentage point of view, so the winning culture in our team is as strong as ever.”

“I think that when you look at…our team room, [Paul] McGinley, Thomas Björn, like I say, José Maria [Olazabal], we had Monty [Colin Montgomerie] in there, just people that are still connected to the European team, and I would say invested in the European team.

Rory McIlroy says he has no issues with fans heckling players at the Ryder Cup, describing it as 'part of' the tournament.

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Rory McIlroy says he has no issues with fans heckling players at the Ryder Cup, describing it as ‘part of’ the tournament.

Rory McIlroy says he has no issues with fans heckling players at the Ryder Cup, describing it as ‘part of’ the tournament.

“There’s still a lot of winning culture around what we do. So obviously in life and in business and everything, there’s obviously transition phases where you need to look to new leaders and what would be great is if you can kind of slip through that period of transition unaffected.

“You start to look to the next generation obviously to come through and to start to kind of have that winning culture. That could happen as early as this year. You start to get the rookies off to a good start this year at home, and suddenly you start to blood some of the future with positive experiences.

Team Europe Ryder Cup captain, Luke Donald gives us a behind the scenes look at their team space at the Marco Simone Golf course.

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Team Europe Ryder Cup captain, Luke Donald gives us a behind the scenes look at their team space at the Marco Simone Golf course.

Team Europe Ryder Cup captain, Luke Donald gives us a behind the scenes look at their team space at the Marco Simone Golf course.

“Maybe the transition has started last time around at Whistling Straits and now we’re coming through that already. But yeah, there is a difference.

“Obviously, Westy [Westwood], Poults [Poulter] – as captains or vice-captains or however they may or may not be involved in the future – they do have a lot to offer, of course, from experiences and that point of view.”

Live coverage from the opening day of the Ryder Cup begins on Friday from 6am on Sky Sports Golf. There’s also live content each day in the build-up to the tournament. Stream the PGA Tour, DP Tour, Ryder Cup and more with NOW.

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Solheim Cup: Team USA dominate opening foursomes to lead Team Europe 4-0 at Finca Cortesin

Team USA swept the opening session for the first time in Solheim Cup history and also won a foursomes session 4-0 for the first time; Team Europe face uphill task in bid for historic Solheim Cup third consecutive victory

Last Updated: 22/09/23 2:00pm


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A putt from Allisen Corpuz secured Team USA a clean sweep in the morning foursome matches on day one at the Solheim Cup in Spain.

A putt from Allisen Corpuz secured Team USA a clean sweep in the morning foursome matches on day one at the Solheim Cup in Spain.

Team Europe made the worst possible start to their bid for a historic Solheim Cup threepeat as Team USA won all four matches in the Friday foursomes at Finca Cortesin.

Ally Ewing and Cheyenne Knight secured the first point of the contest when they claimed a convincing 5&4 win over Emily Pedersen and Charley Hull, who suffered a neck strain in the build-up to the biennial contest.

Solheim Cup stalwart Lexi Thompson led from the front in the top match and partnered Megan Khang to a topsy-turvy 2&1 win over Swedish rookies Maja Stark and Linn Grant, while Celine Boutier and Georgia Hall’s unbeaten Solheim Cup partnership was ended by Danielle Kang and Andrea Lee.

Lexi Thompson and Megan Khang beat Maja Stark (Swe) and Linn Grant (Swe) 2&1

Danielle Kang and Andrea Lee beat Celine Boutier (Fra) and Georgia Hall (Eng) 1up

Nelly Korda and Allisen Corpuz beat Leona Maguire (Irl) and Anna Nordqvist (Swe) 1UP

Ally Ewing and Cheyenne Knight beat Charley Hull (Eng) and Emily Pedersen (Den) 5&4

Boutier and Hall were 1up on the final green to ensure Team USA would win the opening session for the first time since 2009, before Nelly Korda and Allisen Corpuz completed the clean sweep by defeating Leona Maguire and Anna Nordqvist by the same margin.

Linn Grant and Maja Stark were defeated 2&1 by Lexi Thompson and Megan Khang in the Friday morning foursomes session after Grant missed a short putt on the 17th hole at Finca Cortesin.

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Linn Grant and Maja Stark were defeated 2&1 by Lexi Thompson and Megan Khang in the Friday morning foursomes session after Grant missed a short putt on the 17th hole at Finca Cortesin.

Linn Grant and Maja Stark were defeated 2&1 by Lexi Thompson and Megan Khang in the Friday morning foursomes session after Grant missed a short putt on the 17th hole at Finca Cortesin.

“You could not ask for much more,” Team USA captain Stacy Lewis told Sky Sports. “We knew seeing the pairings those middle two matches were going to be tough, but I saw a ton of fight in my girls and fortunately we were on the right side of it.”

Team Europe captain Suzann Pettersen admitted her side had made a “rocky start” and pinpointed putting as the area that needed most improvement going into the afternoon fourballs.

Team USA Solheim Cup captain Stacy Lewis claimed that Lexi Thompson wasn't in her original plans for the Friday morning foursomes

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Team USA Solheim Cup captain Stacy Lewis claimed that Lexi Thompson wasn’t in her original plans for the Friday morning foursomes

Team USA Solheim Cup captain Stacy Lewis claimed that Lexi Thompson wasn’t in her original plans for the Friday morning foursomes

“It was a tough morning. I thought a lot of the girls fought really hard,” Pettersen told Sky Sports. “We’ve just got to stand back up.

“I don’t know if we’re trying too hard, but I feel like there were maybe some easy holes given away early in the morning on the greens pretty much.

“We’ve just got to get some putts dropping, get some momentum going and get the crowds louder.

“It was a rocky start, but sometimes that’s good too.”

Match 1: Lexi Thompson and Megan Khang beat Maja Stark and Linn Grant 2&1

Team USA won the first three holes and Thompson missed a birdie opportunity at the next that could have put them four ahead, only for Stark to reduce the deficit with a par at the sixth and scramble a share of the spoils at the par-five eighth despite finding bushes off the tee.

Linn Grant and Maja Stark were defeated 2&1 by Lexi Thompson and Megan Khang in the Friday morning foursomes session after Grant missed a short putt on the 17th hole at Finca Cortesin.

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Linn Grant and Maja Stark were defeated 2&1 by Lexi Thompson and Megan Khang in the Friday morning foursomes session after Grant missed a short putt on the 17th hole at Finca Cortesin.

Linn Grant and Maja Stark were defeated 2&1 by Lexi Thompson and Megan Khang in the Friday morning foursomes session after Grant missed a short putt on the 17th hole at Finca Cortesin.

A par at the 11th and a birdie at the 13th pulled the contest level, before Thompson birdied the 15th to edge back ahead and USA secured victory when the European pair bogeyed the penultimate hole.

“We worked really well together and it was definitely a great win,” Thompson told Sky Sports. “They played some good golf and we knew we had to come out swinging and play hard.”

Linn Grant holed a huge par putt on the 16th to halve the hole for Team Europe in Friday morning's foursomes to ensure Suzann Pettersen's side still had a chance of picking up a point in the match.

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Linn Grant holed a huge par putt on the 16th to halve the hole for Team Europe in Friday morning’s foursomes to ensure Suzann Pettersen’s side still had a chance of picking up a point in the match.

Linn Grant holed a huge par putt on the 16th to halve the hole for Team Europe in Friday morning’s foursomes to ensure Suzann Pettersen’s side still had a chance of picking up a point in the match.

Match 2: Danielle Kang and Andrea Lee beat Celine Boutier and Georgia Hall 1up

Kang won the opening hole with a birdie before Europe edged ahead with back-to-back holes from the fifth, only for the hosts to respond to losing the seventh hole with a bogey by making a birdie at the next.

Emily Pedersen and Charley Hull went six down through nine holes as Team Europe struggled in the bottom match during the foursomes on day one of the Solheim Cup in Spain.

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Emily Pedersen and Charley Hull went six down through nine holes as Team Europe struggled in the bottom match during the foursomes on day one of the Solheim Cup in Spain.

Emily Pedersen and Charley Hull went six down through nine holes as Team Europe struggled in the bottom match during the foursomes on day one of the Solheim Cup in Spain.

Kang and Lee won back-to-back holes to move USA ahead and Boutier converted from 10 feet again to level at the 12th, while Kang holed a monster birdie from the opposite side of the green to snatch a share of the spoils at the 13th.

The contest remained level until the par-three 17th, where Lee made an eight-foot birdie after a brilliant approach by Kang, with a par at the last enough to move the visitors into a 3-0 advantage.

Match 3: Nelly Korda and Allisen Corpuz beat Leona Maguire and Anna Nordqvist 1up

Korda found water off the tee at the driveable first but the Americans responded by winning three consecutive holes from the third to move 2up, only for the European to take successive holes from the sixth to level the contest.

Team USA's Nelly Korda gifted Team Europe the first hole against Leona Maguire and Anna Nordqvist at the Solheim Cup at Finca Cortesin.

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Team USA’s Nelly Korda gifted Team Europe the first hole against Leona Maguire and Anna Nordqvist at the Solheim Cup at Finca Cortesin.

Team USA’s Nelly Korda gifted Team Europe the first hole against Leona Maguire and Anna Nordqvist at the Solheim Cup at Finca Cortesin.

Team USA took the ninth and 11th holes before Maguire followed a birdie at the 16th by holing another to match the American birdie at the next, although the Europeans were unable to take advantage of the par-five last as the visitors won a foursomes session 4-0 for the first time in the event’s history.

Match 4: Ally Ewing and Cheyenne Knight beat Charley Hull and Emily Pedersen 5&4

A par for Team USA was enough to take the par-five second and Ewing went agonisingly close to an eagle at the par-five fourth, with the tap-in birdie starting the run of three consecutive holes won.

Emily Pedersen and Charley Hull went six down through nine holes as Team Europe struggled in the bottom match during the foursomes on day one of the Solheim Cup in Spain.

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Emily Pedersen and Charley Hull went six down through nine holes as Team Europe struggled in the bottom match during the foursomes on day one of the Solheim Cup in Spain.

Emily Pedersen and Charley Hull went six down through nine holes as Team Europe struggled in the bottom match during the foursomes on day one of the Solheim Cup in Spain.

Back-to-back birdies from the eighth left Team USA 6up at the turn against an out-of-sorts European pair, who reduced the gap by starting their back nine with a winning birdie at the par-three 10th but were unable to mount any kind of comeback in a one-sided contest.

“We both stuck to our game plan and executed it well,” Ewing said. “It’s such a tough format, you rely and lay heavily on each other, so it’s just to know we’ve got each other’s back. We’re very happy at this point.”

Who will win the 2023 Solheim Cup? Watch exclusively live this week on Sky Sports! Live coverage continues on Saturday from 6.30am. Stream the Solheim Cup and more with NOW.

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Paul McGinley: Solheim Cup and Ryder Cup to produce exciting finishes between Europe and USA


Paul McGinley

Golf Columnist

Team Europe chase a third consecutive Solheim Cup victory this week in Spain, while Team USA look to retain the Ryder Cup and win on away soil in Rome next week; Watch both events exclusively live on Sky Sports Golf

Last Updated: 21/09/23 3:39pm


Watch the Solheim Cup and the Ryder Cup exclusively live on Sky Sports. Live coverage of the Solheim Cup is from September 22-24 and the Ryder Cup is live from September 29-October 1

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Watch the Solheim Cup and the Ryder Cup exclusively live on Sky Sports. Live coverage of the Solheim Cup is from September 22-24 and the Ryder Cup is live from September 29-October 1

Watch the Solheim Cup and the Ryder Cup exclusively live on Sky Sports. Live coverage of the Solheim Cup is from September 22-24 and the Ryder Cup is live from September 29-October 1

Former Ryder Cup-winning captain Paul McGinley looks ahead to a big two weeks of team golf and explains why both the Solheim Cup and Ryder Cup are tough to predict a winner…

I’m looking forward to the Solheim Cup and being in southern Europe for two weeks in a row. Europe have had a lot of success over the last few years and, by world rankings, they look to be even stronger than they were two years ago.

These are two very young teams – two of the youngest in history, for either side, but what is really important in any team is a vibe and energy. You can read it through the body language of the players and I certainly picked up on that for Europe in their win in Ohio in 2021.

Henni Koyack takes a look at who will feature for Team Europe as they hope to secure a third consecutive Solheim Cup which starts on Friday

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Henni Koyack takes a look at who will feature for Team Europe as they hope to secure a third consecutive Solheim Cup which starts on Friday

Henni Koyack takes a look at who will feature for Team Europe as they hope to secure a third consecutive Solheim Cup which starts on Friday

There’s no doubt Europe had great body language and looked like a team infused with a lot of energy, which is something that really impressed. They also looked like a team that had one thing on their mind and that was winning away from home, which they duly delivered.

Going in as favourites puts a target on your back, with what many would call a stronger team. It can be difficult, but the big advantage they’re going to have is the home crowd. That’s always very influential, it’s a great situation to be in when you’re favourites.

You can’t over-egg it either way, because teams are so evenly matched. The main thing is to drive the team towards performance. If they perform well, they’ll win – with the advantage of playing at home.

Team Europe captain Suzann Pettersen looks ahead to the 2023 Solheim Cup and says the players are set on what will happen on Friday with regards to pairings

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Team Europe captain Suzann Pettersen looks ahead to the 2023 Solheim Cup and says the players are set on what will happen on Friday with regards to pairings

Team Europe captain Suzann Pettersen looks ahead to the 2023 Solheim Cup and says the players are set on what will happen on Friday with regards to pairings

Sticking to a winning formula

I think, as a team, you use what has worked in the past as a base. You’ve got some young players coming in and it’s important that you don’t break up tried and tested partnerships to integrate some younger people in – you’ve got to do it in a constructive way.

It’s easy to get lost with working too hard on the rookies. Ultimately, your top players are going to win these events for you – whether that’s the Solheim Cup or the Ryder Cup. The players that play four or five matches, they’re the key. It’s important they’re in very strong partnerships and are properly engaged in the task ahead.

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September 22, 2023, 6:30am

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It’s not a question of treating everyone exactly the same – in theory that’s what you want to do, but in reality you lean towards the top players who are carrying the workload in terms of winning the most points.

That’s what Suzann Pettersen will be looking for from her players. You’ve got to get into their heads mentally to get a performance out of them. Ultimately, that is what will determine whether Europe win or not.

As the Solheim Cup gets under way on September 22, we take a look back at some classic winning moments from down the years between Team USA and Team Europe

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As the Solheim Cup gets under way on September 22, we take a look back at some classic winning moments from down the years between Team USA and Team Europe

As the Solheim Cup gets under way on September 22, we take a look back at some classic winning moments from down the years between Team USA and Team Europe

I think both the Solheim and Ryder Cup are going to come right down to the wire, with all four teams having a lot of players in form. For golf, it would be great to have two team events back-to-back come down a big finish and creating great excitement.

The majors this year haven’t been particularly exciting, with many of them seemingly having a clear winner with four or five holes to go. With the Solheim Cup, it has been one or two points in the last two editions and there’s no reason to say that it’s not going to be close again.

Davies: Strength in depth key for Europe

Dame Laura Davies is serving as vice-captain for this year’s contest, having played in a record 12 Solheim Cups, with the Englishwoman impressed with the strength that Europe have to offer within their line-up.

Dame Laura Davies believes the European team is the strongest she can remember in the history of the Solheim Cup

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Dame Laura Davies believes the European team is the strongest she can remember in the history of the Solheim Cup

Dame Laura Davies believes the European team is the strongest she can remember in the history of the Solheim Cup

“We’ve always had really good European teams in terms of the top seven or eight – mainly because in the old days not everyone played on the LPGA Tour,” Davies explained. “This year we’ve got 12 LPGA Tour-based players in the European team. They’re all very confident, great ball-strikers.

“I’d say we haven’t got one superstar, but 12 superstars. Number one through number 12, there’s not much in it. If you look in Suzann’s notebook, there’s about 100,000 different permutations and she’s driving herself mad with it because she has a luxury of riches.

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September 22, 2023, 12:30pm

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“I don’t think the girls are thinking as favourites. We’ve won the last two, but we know we could have lost the last two. I’d say it’s 50-50. It could come down to the last match or the last two. I think it probably will. It’s as even a playing field as you’ve ever seen.

“The Americans have got the last two major champions – Lilia Vu and Allisen Corpuz – and though Lexi Thompson is not playing her best, it’s match play and she’s going to relish this. They’ve also got Nelly Korda. But we’ve got Madelene Sagstrom, Charley Hull and all these players. I just think it’s going to be a feast.”

Who will win the 2023 Solheim Cup? Watch exclusively live on Sky Sports! Live coverage from the opening day begins on Friday from 6.30am on Sky Sports Golf and Sky Sports Main Event. Stream the Solheim Cup and more with NOW.



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AIG Women’s Open: Charley Hull looks to replicate Georgia Hall with major victory on home soil

All four women’s major so far in 2023 have produced maiden major champions; Charley Hull among the hope hopes as she looks to win the AIG Women’s Open, five years on from Georgia Hall’s success; watch live on Thursday from 11am on Sky Sports Golf

Last Updated: 08/08/23 5:35pm


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Britain’s Charley Hull is hoping home advantage can help her secure her first major as she prepares for the Women’s Open at Walton Heath

Britain’s Charley Hull is hoping home advantage can help her secure her first major as she prepares for the Women’s Open at Walton Heath

Charley Hull hopes to take inspiration from close friend Georgia Hall and extend the run of first-time major winners this week at the AIG Women’s Open.

Hull finished runner-up at the Tournament of Champions in January and threatened a major breakthrough at the US Women’s Open last month, finishing tied-second behind Allisen Corpuz, then claimed second at the Aramco Team Series event at the Centurion Club in her next start.

The 27-year-old heads to Walton Heath having missed the cut in three of the four majors this year and never finished higher than 12th in her previous 11 AIG Women’s Open appearances, although hopes to match Hall’s 2018 success and enjoy victory on home soil.

The final major of the season in women's golf major season gets under way at Walton Heath on August 10 - you can catch all of the action live on Sky Sports.

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The final major of the season in women’s golf major season gets under way at Walton Heath on August 10 – you can catch all of the action live on Sky Sports.

The final major of the season in women’s golf major season gets under way at Walton Heath on August 10 – you can catch all of the action live on Sky Sports.

“I finished second the week after the US Women’s Open and it gives me a bit of confidence,” Hull told Sky Sports ahead of the final women’s major of the year. “I feel good.

“I feel in a good mindset and I know what it takes to win events. It would be great to win on home soil, just like Georgia (Hall) did a few years ago. You’ve got to be aggressive to win any tournament I think, certainly for me anyway. I enjoy playing that way and I find it fun.

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“It’s really special, especially when it’s in England! We don’t play enough tournaments at home and I’m so much a home person. I love being at home – it makes me happy. I’m looking forward to having my friends and family down there.”

Hall relishing Boutier pairing at Walton Heath

Hall will play alongside Solheim Cup team-mate Celine Boutier for the first two rounds, who is chasing her third consecutive LPGA Tour victory after following a maiden major title on home soil at the Evian Championship by winning the Women’s Scottish Open on Sunday.

Georgia Hall is hoping to triumph once again at the AIG Women's Open, having secured her only major back in 2018 at the tournament

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Georgia Hall is hoping to triumph once again at the AIG Women’s Open, having secured her only major back in 2018 at the tournament

Georgia Hall is hoping to triumph once again at the AIG Women’s Open, having secured her only major back in 2018 at the tournament

“I have been in contention a couple of times after winning in 2018 and it gave me a bit of a boost coming down the stretch,” Hall told Sky Sports. “Hopefully I can be in a good position come the weekend but I am just going to look forward to my tee shot on Thursday first.

“I played with Celine (Boutier) quite a lot this year already and I know her quite well from being partners in Solheim. We have been partners in the Solheim for the past two and I am just really pleased for her winning the last two (events).

In-form Celine Boutier says she is looking to maintain her winning streak with victory at the Women's Open at Walton Heath this week

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In-form Celine Boutier says she is looking to maintain her winning streak with victory at the Women’s Open at Walton Heath this week

In-form Celine Boutier says she is looking to maintain her winning streak with victory at the Women’s Open at Walton Heath this week

“Winning in your home country, I know what that feels like and she is such a lovely person, we will have a lot of fun out there. Mentally it is very tiring, especially being on top of the leaderboard and winning two in a row.

“I don’t know what that feels like but I bet she has got a lot of confidence going into this week and she strikes the ball well so it will be a good couple of days with her.”

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A British winner at Walton Heath?

Hall became just the fourth Englishwoman in history to win a major, following on from Karen Stupples, Alison Nicholas and Dame Laura Davies, while Catriona Matthew – the only other British female major champion after the Scot won the 2009 contest – is back several of the British contingent to impress.

Former AIG Women's Open champion Catriona Matthew believes it will be difficult for Celine Boutier to win three events in a row

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Former AIG Women’s Open champion Catriona Matthew believes it will be difficult for Celine Boutier to win three events in a row

Former AIG Women’s Open champion Catriona Matthew believes it will be difficult for Celine Boutier to win three events in a row

“Obviously Charley (Hull) grew up playing this kind of golf down here and had a great US Women’s Open, so I think she will be looking to have a good week,” Matthew told Sky Sports. “Then Georgia, she has been playing well on and off this year, and is a previous winner as well.

“There is a lot of home talent. Gemma Dryburgh of course from Scotland is the Scottish hope that has been coming into some form again this year, so some good ones to look for.”

Can Gemma Dryburgh secure a Solheim Cup debut with a strong performance this week?

Can Gemma Dryburgh secure a Solheim Cup debut with a strong performance this week?

On whether Dryburgh can force her way into Solheim Cup consideration with a strong performance, Matthew added. “I think even if they sat it is not [on their minds], I am sure it will be there in the back it.

Gemma knows that if she can just have a good result here, that would hopefully just sew up her potentially pick or get her in the reckoning with Suzann (Pettersen). As much as you say you’re not thinking about it, it is always there lurking in the back of your mind especially with only a couple of weeks to go until the teams are announced.”

Watch the AIG Women’s Open this week live on Sky Sports. The preview show is live on Wednesday August 9 from 4pm on Sky Sports Golf, while coverage of the opening round starts on Thursday August 10 at 11am. Stream the AIG Women’s Open with NOW.



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PGA Tour 2024 season schedule and dates revealed with ‘more at stake every week’ under new plans

Increase in no-cut events and events with limited fields; eight ‘signature events’ form part of 36-event regular season; PGA Tour says new-look schedule will create “excitement for our fans and reward players like never before”; watch the PGA Tour live on Sky Sports Golf

Last Updated: 07/08/23 9:18pm


The PGA Tour has released a new “reimagined” schedule for the 2024 season, which features more no-cut events than ever before and an increased $25m prize for the winner of the FedExCup.

Returning to a calendar-year schedule for the first time since 2012, the PGA Tour has described the events as being “interconnected like never before to deliver maximum drama and consequence”.

The FedExCup Regular Season will consist of 36 events.

The 2024 season begins in early January with the ‘Opening Drive’ double-header at The Sentry and Sony Open in Hawaii, and runs through to the Wyndham Championship in early August.

These tournaments include the four majors, The Players Championship and eight ‘signature events’.

At the end of the regular season, the top 70 players will advance to the FedExCup Playoffs.

“We are excited about the roll-out of the PGA Tour’s reimagined schedule and what the season will offer to our fans: a January start with stars competing head-to-head more often, alongside the weekly drama of life-altering moments and the emergence of new stars,” said PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan.

“While winning on the PGA Tour continues to be the ultimate – and most difficult – challenge, we have further connected every tournament, with more at stake each week.

“From The Sentry through the FedExCup Playoffs and into the soon-to-be-announced FedExCup Fall, this new, cadence will create consistent excitement for our fans and reward players like never before.

Charley Hoffman makes an albatross on the 15th hole of the Sedgefield Country Club at the Wyndham Championship

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Charley Hoffman makes an albatross on the 15th hole of the Sedgefield Country Club at the Wyndham Championship

Charley Hoffman makes an albatross on the 15th hole of the Sedgefield Country Club at the Wyndham Championship

“We are grateful to the membership – especially the Player Directors and Player Advisory Council – as well as our tournaments and partners for the collaboration that has set us up for an exciting 2024.”

The release of the 2024 calendar comes two months after the the PGA Tour and DP World Tour announced a shock proposed agreement with Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund, which funds LIV Golf, to form a new joint commercial entity in order to “unify the game”.

The ‘signature events’ explained

Previously referred to as ‘designated events’ in 2023, the newly-renamed signature events underline the continued evolution of the PGA Tour’s season format.

The eight events are limited-field tournaments with increased prize money and FedExCup points.

Five of these will not feature a cut, but the three player-hosted invitationals – The Genesis Invitational, Arnold Palmer Invitational and the Memorial Tournament – will still feature a 36-hole cut to the top 50 and ties and any player within 10 shots of the lead.

The eight ‘signature events’ are as follows:

  • The Sentry (January 1-7)
  • AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am (January 29-February 4)
  • The Genesis Invitational (February 12-18)
  • Arnold Palmer Invitational presented by Mastercard (March 4-10)
  • RBC Heritage (April 15-21)
  • Wells Fargo Championship (May 6-12)
  • the Memorial Tournament presented by Workday (June 3-9)
  • Travelers Championship (June 17-23)
Justin Thomas missed the FedExCup Playoffs in a painful way as his chip attempt stayed out after hitting the pin, meaning he finished outside the top 70 in the points standings

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Justin Thomas missed the FedExCup Playoffs in a painful way as his chip attempt stayed out after hitting the pin, meaning he finished outside the top 70 in the points standings

Justin Thomas missed the FedExCup Playoffs in a painful way as his chip attempt stayed out after hitting the pin, meaning he finished outside the top 70 in the points standings

Explaining the qualification process for these events, the PGA Tour said in a statement: “The 2024 schedule cadence connects events through several new eligibility paths, allowing trending players to earn Signature Event starts and ensuring every member the opportunity to compete alongside the game’s best.

“The Sentry is the season’s first Signature Event and includes PGA TOUR winners from the previous calendar year as well as the top 50 members from the 2022-23 FedExCup standings (i.e. those who qualify for the BMW Championship, the second FedExCup Playoffs event).

“Eligibility for the remaining seven Signature Events (field sizes anticipated to be between 70-80 players) includes the top 50 members from the 2022-23 FedExCup standings and 15 members who can play their way in through The Next 10 and The Swing 5.”

The AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am is a new addition to that list for 2024 and will feature a revised format. Amateurs will now compete alongside professionals (80 players) over the first two rounds, with the competition limited to professionals only for the final two rounds.

Beem: Designated events with cuts will create more excitement

Rich Beem gives his thoughts on the PGA Tour's announcement that a huge change to the schedule is planned for 2024 including eight elevated events with five of those tournaments not having a cut.

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Rich Beem gives his thoughts on the PGA Tour’s announcement that a huge change to the schedule is planned for 2024 including eight elevated events with five of those tournaments not having a cut.

Rich Beem gives his thoughts on the PGA Tour’s announcement that a huge change to the schedule is planned for 2024 including eight elevated events with five of those tournaments not having a cut.

2002 PGA Championship winner and Sky Sports’ Rich Beem on the new calendar:

“Looking at the schedule I think there’s very few surprises. The designated events and those three which are designated, where they will have cuts – the ones that Tiger Woods, Jack Nicklaus and Arnold Palmer host – they are going to have a cut into the low 50 [players] and then it will be an increased purse to the winner from $3.6m to $4m.

“I think that will create a lot more excitement for fans at home and for us watching on TV just for the simple fact that a lot of times this year, especially on Fridays, we are looking at a lot of drama for some players trying to finally make the cut.

“If you look at the way, even the top players in the world play the game at the highest level, they are grinding it as much as they possibly can to stick around for the final 36 because they know anything is possible.

“I’m glad we have at least three of those designated events, out of the eight, that are going to go ahead and have a cut line. I think that’s going to be really valuable. What happens with that will determine whether we have cuts going forward in those designated events.”

Watch all the women’s majors, the Solheim Cup, the Ryder Cup and the end of the PGA Tour and DP World Tour seasons exclusively live over the coming months on Sky Sports Golf. Stream the best sport with NOW

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Ryder Cup watch at The Open: Can Padraig Harrington boost hopes for historic pick for Team Europe?

Two-time Open winner Padraig Harrington sits 60th on the European Points List and 44th on the World Points List as he aims to become the oldest player in Ryder Cup history; Harrington looking to earn more qualification points at The 151st Open, live from Thursday on Sky Sports Golf

Last Updated: 17/07/23 1:25pm


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Legendary golf coach Pete Cowen claims 51-year-old Padraig Harrington deserves a spot in the European team ahead of the Ryder Cup in Rome and reveals increased power has helped him improve his game recently

Legendary golf coach Pete Cowen claims 51-year-old Padraig Harrington deserves a spot in the European team ahead of the Ryder Cup in Rome and reveals increased power has helped him improve his game recently

Time is running out for players to force their way into Ryder Cup consideration, but could a former captain be an option as a captain’s pick for Team Europe in Rome?

The qualification campaign for Luke Donald’s team runs until the start of September, when the three leading players on the European Points List and the next three on the World Points List will be joined by six captain’s picks.

Several of Europe’s last Ryder Cup team will be unable to compete this time around after switching to LIV Golf, while Padraig Harrington – who was captain for the 2021 loss at Whistling Straits – remaining hopeful of forcing his way into Donald’s plans.

Jon Rahm believes Sergio Garcia should be allowed to play at the Ryder Cup and feels politics are getting in the way of a great event

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Jon Rahm believes Sergio Garcia should be allowed to play at the Ryder Cup and feels politics are getting in the way of a great event

Jon Rahm believes Sergio Garcia should be allowed to play at the Ryder Cup and feels politics are getting in the way of a great event

Harrington is without a DP World Tour victory since 2016 but has won five times in 13 months on the PGA Tour Champions, where he has posted top-seven finishes in six of his eight starts, with the former major looking to impress again in The 151st Open at Royal Liverpool.

The 51-year-old would become the oldest player in Ryder Cup history should be make a seventh appearance for Team Europe at Marco Simone Golf Club, with former team-mate Darren Clarke and major-winning coach Pete Cowen both backing him to be selected.

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“I would pick him, definitely,” Cowen said on the R&A’s On the Range show. “The way he’s playing and his experience. He’ll be great in the team room and you can rely on him under pressure

“He’s playing great, so he definitely would be in my team.”

Cowen’s views were echoed by Clarke, who told Sky Sports News: “There’s competition there for spots, but the way Harrington’s been playing with us out in on the Champions Tour, he’s hitting the ball further now than he’s ever hit the ball.

Could Padraig Harrington feature for Team Europe in the Ryder Cup this September?

Could Padraig Harrington feature for Team Europe in the Ryder Cup this September?

“His game is so solid to the green. He’s playing wonderfully well so that’s a good position for Luke (Donald) to have choices of guys playing well, so if he were to pick Padraig (Harrington) I wouldn’t be surprised.”

Harrington open to schedule change to boost hopes

Harrington finished fourth at the season-opening Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship and posted a top 10 on the PGA Tour in April at the Valero Texas Open, with the Irishman also performing well at the US Open and impressing at the Genesis Scottish Open before fading over the weekend.

Padraig Harrington made six consecutive appearances for Team Europe between 1999 and 2010

Padraig Harrington made six consecutive appearances for Team Europe between 1999 and 2010

The three-time major winner had intended to play on the PGA Tour Champions over the summer, although would be open to playing more on the DP World Tour if it will enhance his chances of a first Ryder Cup appearance since 2010.

“I’ve been playing better, getting better and doing things better, Harrington told Sky Sports on Friday. “The Champions Tour has got me focused better and I’ve started putting better.

“So I’m in a nice place, I’ll see how I play over the next two weeks [Scottish Open and The Open] then have a chat with Luke (Donald) and if necessary I’ll change my schedule and come back and play a few in Europe.

Rory McIlroy will be a key part of Luke Donald's Ryder Cup team in Rome

Rory McIlroy will be a key part of Luke Donald’s Ryder Cup team in Rome

“My intention was to go play some Champions Tour events but if I’m genuinely in contention then I’m prepared to make the effort and change my schedule and come back and prove it.”

Team Europe as it stands

Rory McIlroy extended his advantage at the top of the European Points List with his stunning victory at the Genesis Scottish Open on Sunday, where he birdied his final two holes to claim a second successive Rolex Series title.

Highlights from a dramatic final round as Rory McIlroy secured a dramatic victory over Robert MacIntyre at the Scottish Open

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Highlights from a dramatic final round as Rory McIlroy secured a dramatic victory over Robert MacIntyre at the Scottish Open

Highlights from a dramatic final round as Rory McIlroy secured a dramatic victory over Robert MacIntyre at the Scottish Open

McIlroy leads Jon Rahm on that list and closed the gap on the Spaniard on the World Points List, while Robert MacIntyre moved above Yannik Paul and Adrian Meronk into the automatic qualification spots with his runner-up finish at the Renaissance Club.

Viktor Hovland, Tyrrell Hatton and Matt Fitzpatrick hold the other automatic spots as things stand, while Tommy Fleetwood, Victor Perez and Shane Lowry are lurking close behind with just a handful of qualification events remaining.

Which LIV players could feature for Team USA?

The majors are the only opportunity for LIV players from America to earn Ryder Cup qualification points, meaning this week’s event is the last chance to impress and force them into Zach Johnson’s plans for Team USA.

US Ryder Cup captain Zach Johnson said at May's PGA Championship he was unsure whether he'll be picking players from LIV Golf for this year's event

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US Ryder Cup captain Zach Johnson said at May’s PGA Championship he was unsure whether he’ll be picking players from LIV Golf for this year’s event

US Ryder Cup captain Zach Johnson said at May’s PGA Championship he was unsure whether he’ll be picking players from LIV Golf for this year’s event

Koepka is well-placed to qualify automatically after following his runner-up finish at The Masters by winning the PGA Championship this year, while a strong performance this week could mathematically secure him a spot for Team USA.

DeChambeau posted a top-four finish during Koepka’s win at Oak Hill and finished runner-up in last month’s LIV event at Valderrama, where Gooch strengthened his claim for a captain’s pick by registering a third victory of the season.

Rory McIlroy says Brooks Koepka deserves to be on the United States team for the Ryder Cup but his feelings are different for the European players on the LIV tour

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Rory McIlroy says Brooks Koepka deserves to be on the United States team for the Ryder Cup but his feelings are different for the European players on the LIV tour

Rory McIlroy says Brooks Koepka deserves to be on the United States team for the Ryder Cup but his feelings are different for the European players on the LIV tour

Johnson – who won all five of his matches in Team USA’s record-breaking Ryder Cup win in 2021 – arrives with top-10 finishes in his last three worldwide starts, while Reed was only one stroke back during the latest LIV Golf League event in London earlier this month.

If any of the American contingent were crowned Champion Golfer of the Year this week, it would be difficult for Johnson not to include them among his six captain’s picks when he finalises his team at the end of August.

Watch The 151st Open throughout the week exclusively live on Sky Sports. Live coverage of the opening round begins on Thursday July 20 from 6.30am on Sky Sports Golf.



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PGA Tour and PIF drop poaching clause from agreement | ‘Unnecessary in spirit of cooperation’

The non-solicitation clause in the agreement stated that the PIF, the PGA Tour and European tour would no longer “solicit or recruit any players who are members of the other tours or organizations to become members of their respective organizations”

Last Updated: 14/07/23 7:58am


As part of the original agreement, there was a clause that said each entity would no longer “solicit or recruit any players who are members of the other tours”

The PGA Tour and the Saudi Public Investment Fund have responded to a Justice Department inquiry by dropping a clause in their agreement that would have prohibited the poaching of players.

The Justice Department’s antitrust review began last summer and expanded when the PGA Tour and Saudi Arabia’s PIF agreed to a partnership.

The non-solicitation clause was part of the framework agreement announced June 6 and signed by the PGA Tour, DP World Tour and PIF.

The agreement, still being negotiated and requiring PGA Tour board approval, is for the parties to form a for-profit company that would pool commercial businesses and rights. During a Senate hearing on Tuesday, PGA Tour chief operating officer Ron Price said PIF would contribute at least $1bn.

Speaking on the Golf Channel, NBC's Capitol Hill correspondent Ryan Nobles explains what happened in the US Senate's hearing into the PGA Tour's merger with the Saudi Public Investment Fund

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Speaking on the Golf Channel, NBC’s Capitol Hill correspondent Ryan Nobles explains what happened in the US Senate’s hearing into the PGA Tour’s merger with the Saudi Public Investment Fund

Speaking on the Golf Channel, NBC’s Capitol Hill correspondent Ryan Nobles explains what happened in the US Senate’s hearing into the PGA Tour’s merger with the Saudi Public Investment Fund

Key to the agreement was dropping all antitrust litigation, which a federal judge signed off on last month. Below that section was the non-solicitation clause that said PIF, the PGA Tour and European tour would no longer “solicit or recruit any players who are members of the other tours or organizations to become members of their respective organizations.”

The clause was effective May 30, when the agreement was signed.

Following the removal of the clause, the PGA Tour told Sky Sports: “The Framework Agreement sets the stage for an exciting future for professional golf that re-establishes competition at the highest levels of the sport and creates the biggest stage for everyone – players, sponsors, and fans.

“Based on discussions with staff at the Department of Justice, we chose to remove specific language from the Framework Agreement.

“While we believe the language is lawful, we also consider it unnecessary in the spirit of cooperation and because all parties are negotiating in good faith.”

Defending Open champion Cameron Smith admits his victory at St Andrews last year was overshadowed by his defection to LIV Golf but he nonetheless feels he made the right decision

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Defending Open champion Cameron Smith admits his victory at St Andrews last year was overshadowed by his defection to LIV Golf but he nonetheless feels he made the right decision

Defending Open champion Cameron Smith admits his victory at St Andrews last year was overshadowed by his defection to LIV Golf but he nonetheless feels he made the right decision

The Times reported antitrust experts warned the clause could violate federal law if it threatened the integrity of the labour market and promised to stifle competition for players, who are independent.

The agreement sets a December 31 deadline for finalizing the deal, though both sides can agree to an extension and with LIV Golf having a set 48-man roster for this season, alternates are available for injury, it was unlikely any player would have left for LIV until the 2024 season.

McIlroy: I would rather retire than join LIV

Rory McIlroy has made it abundantly clear how he felt about short-lived proposals that he and Tiger Woods could own LIV Golf teams and play in at least 10 events a season.

Rory McIlroy was satisfied with his performance on the greens with an impressive six under par 64 after round one at the Scottish Open

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Rory McIlroy was satisfied with his performance on the greens with an impressive six under par 64 after round one at the Scottish Open

Rory McIlroy was satisfied with his performance on the greens with an impressive six under par 64 after round one at the Scottish Open

Before the agreement was reached between the PGA Tour, DP World Tour, and PIF, PCP Capital Partners gave a presentation to two PGA Tour officials entitled “The Best of Both Worlds” that featured the McIlroy and Woods proposal as part of a lengthy wish-list which included PIF governor Yasir Al-Rumayyan becoming a member of the R&A and Augusta National.

Neither had any chance of success even if McIlroy – who said he still “hated” LIV when the framework agreement was announced – has now taken a step back from his role as the biggest advocate of the PGA Tour.

“If LIV Golf was the last place to play golf on earth I would retire. That’s how I feel about it,” McIlroy said after an opening 64 in the Genesis Scottish Open, which is live on Sky Sports.

Rory McIlroy shot a six-under par 64 to take a share of the clubhouse lead at the Scottish Open

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Rory McIlroy shot a six-under par 64 to take a share of the clubhouse lead at the Scottish Open

Rory McIlroy shot a six-under par 64 to take a share of the clubhouse lead at the Scottish Open

“There’s quite a bit of apathy towards everything at the moment.

“There wasn’t a lot of new information there for me [in the Senate hearing], there maybe was for other people, but as I said, I’ve almost been too close to it over the last year and a bit so it’s nice to be able to try to distance myself a bit from it.

“The thing that I’ve realised is, no matter what I do or say or try to show leadership, I’m going to be just fine.

“I’ve tried to step up for maybe the guys that didn’t have a voice early on, but I think with everything that’s transpired over the last few weeks the players are going to find themselves more and more at the table to try to get whatever that is they want out of it.

“Again, as long as I get to play the golf that I’ve known over the last 15 years of my career, I’ll be happy.”

Watch The Scottish Open between July 13-16 ahead of The 151st Open at Royal Liverpool from July 20-23, both live on Sky Sports.

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Nick Faldo says Rory McIlroy can thrive now golf’s future has become clearer and does not expect LIV to survive new deal between tours

The PGA Tour, DP World Tour and LIV Golf announced a historic partnership at the beginning of this month; Sir Nick Faldo, who is hosting this week’s Betfred British Masters, believes world No 3 Rory McIlroy can be the chief beneficiary of the proposed new partnership

Last Updated: 28/06/23 2:21pm


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Sir Nick Faldo says he thought LIV Golf would just fade away and believes there was no atmosphere or proper competition in their events

Sir Nick Faldo says he thought LIV Golf would just fade away and believes there was no atmosphere or proper competition in their events

Sir Nick Faldo believes Rory McIlroy can be the key beneficiary of the current state of flux within golf.

The Northern Irishman finished second in the US Open earlier this month and is currently ranked third in the world, behind world No 1 Scottie Scheffler and the Spaniard Jon Rahm.

After the PGA Tour, DP World Tour and LIV Golf announced a historic partnership at the beginning of June, it seems that the chaos which enveloped the top end of the sport may finally be headed towards a conclusion.

Faldo believes McIlroy can thrive following the shock agreement being struck – and reckons his runner-up finish in the US Open shows how well he’s playing.

“We criticise him for finishing second,” said Faldo. “He’s playing beautifully so if he can just get those wedges a smidgen closer, that changes everything.

“Putting under pressure, to putting for birdie, is a huge difference. I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s seriously inspired at Hoylake. That’s where he won last time (the 2014 Open).

“There is scar tissue from nine years without a major and not too many players have come back from a long gap and then go on to reboot your career and win more, but I’m sure he would just love to be able to bowl up, go and practice and play with minimal off-course work and interference.

“You need that when you’re trying to play your best. You’ve got to have that all day long.”

Andrew Coltart explains how he would feel if he was in Rory McIlroy's position after news emerged of the partnership between the PGA Tour, DP World Tour and LIV Golf

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Andrew Coltart explains how he would feel if he was in Rory McIlroy’s position after news emerged of the partnership between the PGA Tour, DP World Tour and LIV Golf

Andrew Coltart explains how he would feel if he was in Rory McIlroy’s position after news emerged of the partnership between the PGA Tour, DP World Tour and LIV Golf

McIlroy admitted he felt like a “sacrificial lamb” when the proposed deal was announced, the four-time major winner having emerged as the public face of the PGA Tour in its battle with LIV.

The following week, he cancelled his pre-tournament press conference ahead of the US Open at Los Angeles Country Club, where he finished second to Wyndham Clark to extend his major championship drought.

“I’m pretty sure Rory’s suffered from being constantly asked, being a spokesman (for the PGA Tour),” Faldo said. “You want a clear head when you go and play golf, you want to be able to concentrate.

“I’d rather be playing well and fending off questions about why I finished second than why I finished 152nd. If you finish second, it’s stewards’ inquiry and a dissection but he’s there, he’s playing that well every week.”

Faldo: LIV will not survive | Mickelson: We have confidence in LIV

Earlier this month, the PGA Tour announced it was creating a new commercial entity with the DP World Tour and Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF), which bankrolls the breakaway circuit.

The deal is subject to judicial scrutiny in the United States and details remain thin on the ground, but the “framework agreement” does state that LIV’s future will be determined by the new entity, whose board will be controlled by a PGA Tour majority.

Sky Sports News' Jamie Weir explains the implications of the partnership between the PGA Tour, DP World Tour and LIV Golf

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Sky Sports News’ Jamie Weir explains the implications of the partnership between the PGA Tour, DP World Tour and LIV Golf

Sky Sports News’ Jamie Weir explains the implications of the partnership between the PGA Tour, DP World Tour and LIV Golf

Asked ahead of the British Masters if LIV can survive, tournament host and six-time major winner Faldo said: “I don’t think so, because nobody’s really interested.

“They’re not going to get the sponsorship that they want. They call it a team (event) and it’s not because it’s strokeplay.

“You see your mates on the putting green and say ‘play well’ and you see them in the scorers tent and say ‘What did you shoot?’ That’s it. A team is out there helping, shoulder to shoulder. That’s a true team.

“You have the ultimate team event, the Ryder Cup, you know the passion and the atmosphere of that. They’re not playing with the same passion and atmosphere as the Ryder Cup.

“It’s only half a dozen (players) that are really current, half of the field I don’t really know and half the field are there for the very nice last-placed money that you still get if you shoot 20 over.”

Phil Mickelson in action at the US Masters earlier this year

Phil Mickelson in action at the US Masters earlier this year

Unsurprisingly, LIV player and HyFlyers team captain Phil Mickelson has a different view and believes everything that the rebels were promised by LIV Golf CEO Greg Norman is coming to pass.

“I think that right now we have basically an agreement to have an agreement and everything over the last couple of years that we’ve been told by Greg and everybody on LIV has come to fruition, so we have a lot of confidence in what they have been saying to us because everything has been happening,” Mickelson said, ahead of the LIV event in Valderrama.

Asked if he felt vindicated by developments, Mickelson added: “I would say I felt appreciation that we got to this point where we’re working together because it makes me confident with where the game of golf is headed in the future.

“We felt like it was going to be about two years roughly before we got to that point. It took a year and a half, or six months quicker than I thought it would be.”

Watch live coverage of both the DP World Tour and PGA Tour on Sky Sports from Thursday with the Betfred British Masters from 1pm and the first round of the Rocket Mortgage Classic from 6.30pm, both live on Sky Sports Golf.



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US Open: Historic week in Los Angeles as major records tumble during Wyndham Clark’s victory

The US Open saw multiple holes-in-one, two players breaking the lowest round recorded in tournament history and a host of records broken; We look at some of the key moments from Wyndham Clark’s one-shot victory and maiden major title

Last Updated: 19/06/23 11:02pm


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Highlights of the final round from the 123rd US Open as Wyndham Clark held off Rory McIlroy to claim his first major win

Highlights of the final round from the 123rd US Open as Wyndham Clark held off Rory McIlroy to claim his first major win

Wyndham Clark etched his name into the history books with his victory at the US Open, becoming golf’s latest first-time major champion as part of a record-breaking week in Los Angeles.

Clark followed his breakthrough PGA Tour title last month at the Wells Fargo Championship by registering a maiden major, finishing a shot clear of Rory McIlroy at Los Angeles Country Club, with world No 1 Scottie Scheffler claiming third spot ahead of Open champion Cameron Smith.

It’s the seventh time in eight years the US Open has produced a first-time major winner, while the tournament will remain long in the memory for all the note-worth records equalled or broken during an entertaining week.

Watch the moment Wyndham Clark became a major winner with victory at the 2023 US Open at Los Angeles Country Club, two-putting on the 72nd hole to claim the trophy

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Watch the moment Wyndham Clark became a major winner with victory at the 2023 US Open at Los Angeles Country Club, two-putting on the 72nd hole to claim the trophy

Watch the moment Wyndham Clark became a major winner with victory at the 2023 US Open at Los Angeles Country Club, two-putting on the 72nd hole to claim the trophy

Benign conditions and favourable pins on Thursday saw six players card scores of 65 or lower, the most in single round at a US Open, with this year’s opening round marking the first time in the tournament’s history that the whole field has managed to post a sub-80 score.

Rickie Fowler and Xander Schauffele were the standout performers on a low-scoring opening day, with Fowler becoming the first player in US Open history to card a ’62 round’ after posting 10 birdies – equalling another record – to set the clubhouse target at eight under.

A look at the highlights from Rickie Fowler's stunning eight-under round of 62 that set a new US Open record, quickly equalled by Xander Schauffele

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A look at the highlights from Rickie Fowler’s stunning eight-under round of 62 that set a new US Open record, quickly equalled by Xander Schauffele

A look at the highlights from Rickie Fowler’s stunning eight-under round of 62 that set a new US Open record, quickly equalled by Xander Schauffele

Schauffele matched Fowler’s total just over 20 minutes later after his bogey-free start to the week, with the pair joining Branden Grace – who set the initial record at The Open in 2017 – in equalling the lowest round in major history.

The field scoring average was 71.38 on Thursday, the lowest for an opening round of the US Open and the third lowest recorded at the event, while the par-three 15th became just the third hole in a US Open to give up multiple holes-in-one on the same day.

Sam Burns produced the second hole-in-one of the first day of the US Open, nailing his tee shot at the par-three 15th to match the feat by Matthieu Pavon

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Sam Burns produced the second hole-in-one of the first day of the US Open, nailing his tee shot at the par-three 15th to match the feat by Matthieu Pavon

Sam Burns produced the second hole-in-one of the first day of the US Open, nailing his tee shot at the par-three 15th to match the feat by Matthieu Pavon

Matthieu Pavon and Sam Burns both made aces on the opening day, with Matt Fitzpatrick then becoming the first defending champion to make a hole-in-one when he posted the third of the tournament on the par-three 15th early in the second round.

Fowler continued to set more records on his way to opening up a one-shot halfway lead, with the 34-year-old birdieing his opening three holes to move to 11 under quicker than any player has ever managed in the tournament’s history.

Watch how Rickie Fowler opened his second round of the US Open with three straight birdies

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Watch how Rickie Fowler opened his second round of the US Open with three straight birdies

Watch how Rickie Fowler opened his second round of the US Open with three straight birdies

A rollercoaster second round saw Fowler post just four pars in a two-under 68, with the American smashing the 36-hole tournament record for most birdies by adding eight on Friday to take his tally to 18.

Fowler’s 130 shots taken across the first two days also equalled the lowest 36-hole score in US Open history, matching the total set by Martin Kaymer on his way to victory in 2014, with tournament records continuing to tumble over the weekend.

Highlights from the second round of the US Open at Los Angeles Country Club, where Rickie Fowler and Rory McIlroy both impressed

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Highlights from the second round of the US Open at Los Angeles Country Club, where Rickie Fowler and Rory McIlroy both impressed

Highlights from the second round of the US Open at Los Angeles Country Club, where Rickie Fowler and Rory McIlroy both impressed

Attention on Saturday once again centred around the par-three 15th, which became the shortest hole in US Open history when it measured at just 81 yards. That was some 219 yards shorter than the yardage for the par-three seventh, which was just a yard short from tying the longest par-three in the tournament’s history.

Tom Kim made an early weekend charge with a front-nine 29 in his third round, reeling off six birdies in a fast start, while Austin Eckroat also turned in 29 on Sunday to also equal the lowest nine-hole score ever recorded at the US Open.

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It was the first time two 29s have been recorded in one week at a US Open, while Tommy Fleetwood became the first player to recorded multiple 63s in the US Open and just the fourth to do so in major history during his stunning final round.

Fleetwood’s fast finish saw him match the same total he posted on the final day of the 2018 contest, lifting him into tied-fifth, as McIlroy fell just short in his bid for a fifth major title and first since 2014.

Rory McIlroy missed out on a first major in nine years after falling one shot short in the US Open at Los Angeles Country Club, a number of near misses with the putter proved to be the difference

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Rory McIlroy missed out on a first major in nine years after falling one shot short in the US Open at Los Angeles Country Club, a number of near misses with the putter proved to be the difference

Rory McIlroy missed out on a first major in nine years after falling one shot short in the US Open at Los Angeles Country Club, a number of near misses with the putter proved to be the difference

McIlroy ended the week on nine under and with a total score of 271, the lowest 72-hole total at the US Open a non-winner, with the 59 greens in regulation made during the week also a tournament record for someone who didn’t go on to claim victory.

What’s next?

The PGA Tour heads to TPC River Highlands next for the Travelers Championship, with McIlroy and Scheffler part of a strong field scheduled to feature 23 of the world’s top 30. Early coverage begins on Thursday from midday via the red button on Sky Sports Golf, ahead of full coverage from 8pm.

Three of the four men’s majors are now completed, with The 151st Open taking place at Royal Liverpool from July 20-23 and exclusively live on Sky Sports.



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US Open: Brooks Koepka relishing more US Open ‘chaos’ and sets ‘double digits’ major target

Brooks Koepka, who won the US Open in 2017 and 2018, claimed a fifth major last month with a two-shot victory at the PGA Championship; Can Koepka enjoy more major success? Watch the US Open live on Thursday from 3pm on Sky Sports Golf

Last Updated: 13/06/23 8:31pm


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Jon Rahm and Brooks Koepka both share their feelings on the new agreement between the PGA Tour, DP World Tour and Saudi Arabia’s PIF

Jon Rahm and Brooks Koepka both share their feelings on the new agreement between the PGA Tour, DP World Tour and Saudi Arabia’s PIF

Brooks Koepka is relishing more “chaos” at the US Open as he looks to follow on from his PGA Championship success and continue his ambitious pursuit of a double-digit major tally.

Koepka won four majors between 2017 and 2019 before seeing his career hampered by injury, with the former world No 1 then switching from the PGA Tour to the Saudi-backed LIV Golf circuit last summer.

The American bounced back from squandering a two-shot lead in the final round of The Masters in April, where he finished tied-second as Jon Rahm claimed victory, to claim a fifth major title with a two-shot victory at Oak Hill last month.

Highlights from the final round of the 2023 PGA Championship at Oak Hill, where Brooks Koepka claimed the Wanamaker Trophy for a third time

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Highlights from the final round of the 2023 PGA Championship at Oak Hill, where Brooks Koepka claimed the Wanamaker Trophy for a third time

Highlights from the final round of the 2023 PGA Championship at Oak Hill, where Brooks Koepka claimed the Wanamaker Trophy for a third time

Koepka is among the pre-tournament favourites once again at Los Angeles Country Club, with the 33-year-old confident of focusing on his own game in a week where conversation is dominated by the shock agreement between the tours to try and unify the sport.

“The more chaotic things get, the easier it gets for me,” Koepka explained in his pre-tournament press conference. “Everything starts to slow down and I am able to focus on whatever I need to focus on while everybody else is dealing with distractions, worried about other things.

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“I think there’s a few of them [reasons why he peaks at majors], but I think it [enjoying chaos] is definitely one of them. I enjoy the chaos.

“I’m pretty sure I know what it takes to compete in majors. I’ve won five of them and been second four times. And just over my track record how to prepare when you’re here, how to prepare when you’re home for it, I’ve got that, I guess, on lock.”

Brooks Koepka is looking to win a third US Open and sixth major title

Brooks Koepka is looking to win a third US Open and sixth major title

Koepka sets ambitious major target

Jack Nicklaus, Tiger Woods and Walter Hagen are the only male golfers in history to win 10 or major titles in their careers, although Koepka feels he can join that group after a PGA Championship victory he describes as the favourite of his major titles.

“They all mean something different, but this last one [PGA Championship], for all the stuff I had to deal with, all the pain, the tears, all the stuff that went into it,” Koepka, who won the US Open in 2017 and 2018, added.

As Brooks Koepka aims to win his third US Open title this week, check out his five previous major victories.

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As Brooks Koepka aims to win his third US Open title this week, check out his five previous major victories.

As Brooks Koepka aims to win his third US Open title this week, check out his five previous major victories.

“Like I said, there’s probably five, seven people in this whole world that really know what I went through and that were there every step of the way. I think they enjoyed it maybe even more than I did.”

On his major target, Koepka said: “I think one thing that was always harped on me was you knew how many majors Jack [Nicklaus] has, you knew how many Tiger [Woods] has, you knew how many Arnold Palmer has, you knew how many Gary Player, [Tom] Watson, all these legends, but I never knew how many PGA Tour events or wins they had total.

Rory McIlroy says Brooks Koepka deserves to be on the United States team for the Ryder Cup but his feelings are different for the European players on the LIV circuit

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Rory McIlroy says Brooks Koepka deserves to be on the United States team for the Ryder Cup but his feelings are different for the European players on the LIV circuit

Rory McIlroy says Brooks Koepka deserves to be on the United States team for the Ryder Cup but his feelings are different for the European players on the LIV circuit

“That’s what you’re judged on. It’s major championships. You look at basketball, you’re judged on how many championships you’ve won, not how many games you’ve won. Same thing in every sport.

“Like I said, double digits, that’s what I’m trying to get to. I don’t think it’s out of the question for me. I think the way I’ve prepared, the way I’ve kind of suited my game for these things is going to help me.

Brooks Koepka played a practice round with fellow LIV member Dustin Johnson ahead of the US Open

Brooks Koepka played a practice round with fellow LIV member Dustin Johnson ahead of the US Open

“I’m only 33, so I’ve definitely got quite a bit of time. I’ve just got to stay healthy and keep doing what I’m doing.”

Could Koepka return to the PGA Tour?

Koepka was left surprised by the PGA Tour and DP World Tour’s plans to merge their commercial operations with the golf-related businesses of Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF), who bankroll LIV, although refused to get drawn on his future career plans.

Dustin Johnson says his understanding is that LIV Golf will still be running a full schedule in 2024, while Cameron Smith and Matt Fitzpatrick admit they were surprised by the PGA Tour and PIF's new deal.

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Dustin Johnson says his understanding is that LIV Golf will still be running a full schedule in 2024, while Cameron Smith and Matt Fitzpatrick admit they were surprised by the PGA Tour and PIF’s new deal.

Dustin Johnson says his understanding is that LIV Golf will still be running a full schedule in 2024, while Cameron Smith and Matt Fitzpatrick admit they were surprised by the PGA Tour and PIF’s new deal.

“We [LIV players] didn’t hear anything about it,” Koepka explained. I think that’s the one thing that shocked everybody the most. I ran into Rickie [Fowler] and JT [Justin Thomas] after watching the whole thing and I asked if they knew, and they said they didn’t know.

“I’m not going to go into the future. I don’t have a crystal ball with me. I’m just worried about the US Open. If I can get to [major] No 6 pretty quick, that would be nice. It’s a lot of what-if games. I’m not going to play the what-if game. If it happens, it happens. If it doesn’t happen, it doesn’t happen.”

Who will win the US Open? Watch the third men’s major of the year exclusively live on Sky Sports. Live coverage begins on Thursday from 3pm on Sky Sports Golf.



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