Koepka cites injured and family members for participating in a Saudi-sponsored LIV golf tour

North Plains of Ore — Brooks Koepka explained that he changed his mind on Tuesday, four months after suggesting that asylum seekers in the Saudi-backed LIV Golf Series were sold out.

Koepka signed with LIV Golf last week for the first event on American soil starting Thursday at Pumpkin Ridge, west of Portland.

It was a surprising reversal for the four major champions who were once the candid critics of the fledgling series trying to challenge the PGA Tour.

“I change my opinion. I am very happy with the decision I made. I was happy and did the best for me,” Koepka said.

In February, Koepka said of LIV Golf: Someone will sell out and go for it. “

Former world number one and four-time winner Rory McIlroy last week suggested that Koepka and others “say one thing and then do another” overlap.

“Look, he has the right to accept his opinion. He can think of whatever he wants,” Koepka replied. “He will do his best for him and his family. I will do my best for me and my family. I can’t hate anyone, and as I said, the opinion is It will change, man. “

Koepka cites a knee injury that damaged his body and a desire to spend more time with his family as factors in his decision. He did not say that LIV Golf, a multi-million dollar contract funded by Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund, handed over to players. Koepka is one of the biggest names, alongside Dustin Johnson and six-time major champion Phil Mickelson.

And you can make even more money. The 48-man field competes for a $ 20 million wallet and wins an additional $ 5 million in prize money for the team’s competition. Charl Schwartzel won his first event in the suburbs of London and brought home $ 4.75 million. LIV tournaments are played over 54 holes without cuts and even the final finishers are paid.

Players who spoke to reporters on Tuesday avoided asking questions about Saudi Arabia’s human rights records.

“I understand the topics you’re trying to raise, and they’re horrifying events, but I’m here to play golf. That’s my deal,” said the PGA. Pat Perez, who won the tour three times, also opposed LIV Golf before he changed his mind. “I have the opportunity to play golf. That’s it.”

2020 US Open Champion Bryson DeChambeau pointed out that he plans to do it in his community with the money he earns from LIV Golf.

“As time goes on, I hope people will see what they are doing and what they are trying to achieve, rather than seeing the bad things that happened before,” DeChambeau said. “I think it’s important to move on from there. Keeping moving forward can be a positive force for the future of the game.”

The mayor of North Plains and 10 other local mayors wrote to the owner of Texas-based Pumpkin Ridge, and the emerging leagues have their values ​​because of Saudi Arabia’s human rights violations, including the killing of the United States. Jamal Khashoggi, a base journalist who said it didn’t match.

Senator Ron Weiden (D-Ore.) States that tours are an example of sportswashing, and countries are using sporting events as a way to distract or minimize human rights abuses. He pointed out the hit-and-run death of a teenager in Oregon. The Saudis accused of this case fled before the trial.

The PGA Tour has sought to combat the threat posed by LIV Golf by training players. The tour has suspended all active members who participated in the first LIV event. Those who play in Oregon will also be suspended unless they resign from their tour membership.

Perez said the PGA Tour tactics backfired.

“I want to be able to play wherever I want, and you should be able to play wherever you want. You should be able to do whatever you want. We are an independent contractor,” Perez said. Told. “The (PGA) Tour has tried to arm us strongly all year round, banning, stopping, etc. How did it work? See how many people are here. It didn’t work at all. “

Koepka cites injured and family members for participating in a Saudi-sponsored LIV golf tour

Source link Koepka cites injured and family members for participating in a Saudi-sponsored LIV golf tour

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