Welcome to LIV Golf, Cameron Smith.
The Australian is making his LIV Golf debut in Boston this week after he headlined the latest list of six golfers to drop out of the PGA Tour. His fortune is reportedly in the hundreds of millions of dollars, but many questions lie ahead.
Bubba Watson, who is also making his LIV Golf debut this week, believes Smith will “fall off the map” if players don’t earn world ranking points from LIV Golf events – as is currently the case.
“The No. 2 player in the world is going to fall off the map at some point,” Watson said at a news conference on Wednesday. “It’s sad. So it’s not the best player in the world [playing in the majors] If you’re going to count such players. “
Unlike many of the players the Saudi-backed LIV recruited from outside the PGA Tour, Smith — 29, two months away from winning the British Open — is a rising player in the sport.
“It’s a real shame we didn’t get world ranking points here,” Smith said.
“It might be a little unfair to have 48 of the best players in the world play and not get world ranking points. The competition is still very fierce here. I just think it’s a little unfair.”
The future of LIV players in the majors remains in doubt as the golf world figures out how to deal with the upstart tour. LIV players are banned from the PGA Tour but are allowed to play in the majors this year.
Watson himself is grappling with the possibility of not being welcomed back to the Masters as a two-time champion.
“I tell my kids that there’s a chance, there’s a chance we can’t go to Augusta,” Watson said. “I told them if they told me I couldn’t go, as a past champion, I don’t want to go there anyway because that’s the wrong way to look at it. It’s a game of golf. We’re all trying to be the best Good player.”
If LIV Golf players are seeking the support of legendary Saudi Arabian golf ambassador Gary Player, they are terribly wrong. The South African slammed Smith in a recent BBC interview, According to Golf Monthly.
“I was shocked to hear about Cameron Smith [had joined LIV Golf],” the player said. “This is a young man who I really think is going to be a superstar. Now, what kind of future does he have? Will he be allowed to play majors in the future? Can he achieve this great championship dream? I have no idea. “
LIV Golf has been criticized for its 54-hole no-chip format, which PGA Tour loyalists say limits the competitiveness of the event.
“I’ve played golf all my life, and I’m not going to spend a billion dollars for my nine majors on two tours,” Player said. “The only guy who has won a Grand Slam on the tour and 165 games. I work hard. I have a desire. I travel the world and it’s an education. I meet great people. How can you Play 54 holes and become a champion without making the cut?”
The Boston event, which kicks off Friday at The International, is the fourth of eight events in LIV Golf’s inaugural season.