Saudi golf CEO tries to retract comments critical of major golf tournaments

The CEO of the Saudi Golf Federation attempted to clarify comments he made earlier this week in which he claimed that the group would start its own major tournaments if members of LIV Golf were unable to play in the current tournaments.

Quoted in an article in The New Yorker earlier this week, Majed Al-Sorour, CEO of Golf Saudi, claimed in a statement Thursday that the publication “wrongly expressed and misrepresented my views.”

“I had an informal conversation with a reporter from New York at the LIV event in Boston a few weeks ago, during which I expressed my frustration with the unfortunate dwindling of LIV Golf players through the PGA Tour,” Srour wrote. “When it comes to Majors and Tournaments that are stand-alone and independent of LIV, I have a lot of respect for Majors. The majors are centered around history, heritage, true competition and honor… The Majors are truly the best platform where LIV golfers and other golfers can compete, although commenting Our Players’ PGA Tour.

What did Sorour tell the New Yorker?

It’s hard to see how Sorour’s “representation” has been ‘misrepresented’ Based on a quote in the New Yorker article.

The major tournaments – the Masters, the PGA Championship, the US Open and the British Open – are all run independently of the PGA Tour and all other tournaments around the world. This means that each individual tournament can decide how to define its field each year. While the PGA Tour has suspended members of LIV Golf from playing at their events, that suspension does not carry over to the majors.

Qualification for majors is based, at least in part, on official golf world ranking points, something not awarded at LIV Golf events. This will make it difficult for LIV golfers to qualify for future majors.

Srour was very blunt about the speculation that the Masters or other big companies might ban LIV Golf players.

“Right now, the big companies are with the tour, and I don’t know why,” he told The New Yorker. “If the big companies decide not to let our players play? I will celebrate. I will create my own specializations for the players.

“Honestly, I think all the tours are run by guys who don’t understand business.”

How it was “misrepresented” is not clear. Suroor is trying to undo his criticism of the disciplines while his players are still qualified to compete there.

Sorour also told The New Yorker, without excuse, “We don’t kill gays, I’ll just tell you.”

Alleged human rights violations in Saudi Arabia, against the LGBT community and beyond, have been a major criticism of LIV Golf since its inception. That’s part of the reason why Phil Mickelson, who has been so critical of his role in the controversial league, made the explosive comments to author Alan Shipnuck, leading him to ditch golf altogether before leaving for LIV.

“These are scary mothers to get involved… We know they were killed [Washington Post reporter Jamal] “Khashoggi has an appalling human rights record,” Mickelson said earlier this year. “They execute people there for being gay. Knowing all this, why am I even thinking about it? Because this is a once in a lifetime opportunity to reshape how the PGA Tour works.”

Sorour seemed to take that first description as a joke.

“They called me a scary mom, *** eh!” he is He told the New YorkerLaughing at the LIV Golf event in Boston.

LIV Golf will wrap up its first season next week at the Trump National Doral in Miami. This will be the second tournament this season to be held at a stadium owned by former President Donald Trump, who is expected to play on Thursday pro-Thursday.

The PGA Tour files second lawsuit against LIV Golf’s financial backers This week too, adding to the legal battle between the two leagues.

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Majed Al-Sorour, CEO of the Saudi Golf Federation, has suggested that he will “create my own specialties” if members of LIV Golf are banned from major golf tournaments. (Charles Laberge / LIV Golf via Getty Images)

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