LIV Golf rioters have been warned further sanctions are likely if they continue to play in the Saudi-backed breakaway series after DP World Tour players who “intentionally broke the rules” were fined £100,000 and suspended from the Scottish Open next month.
he likes Lee Westwood, Sergio Garcia, Jan Poulter and Martin Kaimer – all veterans of the Ryder Cup – among those who were punished for participating in the first event in Hertfordshire earlier this month, despite not receiving exemptions for it.
They were warned that if they played next week’s tournament in Portland, Oregon, additional penalties could be assessed.
DP World Tour chief executive Keith Pelley declined to confirm whether participation in the Ryder Cup was on the line, but stressed that qualification criteria for next year’s tournament in Rome had not yet been determined.
Announcing the sanctions, the DP World Tour, formerly the European Tour, said in a statement: “It is important to note that participation in another conflicting tournament or tournaments without a mandatory release may result in additional sanctions.”
While the PGA Tour promptly banned all of its members within minutes of players starting playing at the Centurion Club two weeks ago, the DP World Tour has put off making a decision until now.
Pelli consulted with the wider organization before a decision was made to sanction the players involved, who, in addition to the Scottish Open, traditionally used as a warm-up for next week’s Open, were also banned from the jointly sanctioned PGA Tour. . Barbasol Championship and Barracuda Championship next month.
“It’s just that a few of our members deliberately violated our rules and regulations, which are contrary to the tournament guidelines that are in the member handbook they signed,” Pelly said.
“This is not a new rule, it has been in place for 30 years.
It is important to note that participation in another conflicting tournament or tournaments without the required authorization may result in additional sanctions.DP World Tour statement on continued participation of LIV Golf
“Talking to many of our members, they were disappointed; they felt disrespectful, disrespectful to the tour from the participants who deliberately violated these rules and regulations that exist to run our tour, protect themselves, protect sponsors and stakeholders.
“At the end of the day, action called for consequences, and we felt we had taken a fair and proportionate step.”
On whether the Ryder Cup opportunity could be withdrawn, the DP World Tour chief executive, who stressed that their decision was made independently of their American counterparts, added: “The European qualification for 2023 has not yet been announced and will not be announced. we have no comment on the Ryder Cup.”
The proceeds from the fines will be equally divided between the prize pools of the upcoming DP World Tour tournaments and the Golf for Good tour charity program.
But while the £100,000 fine may seem punitive, it pales in comparison to the money offered by LIV Golf.
For example, Charl Schwarzel took home £3.2 million for winning the first tournament, while the last place in the 48-man uncut tournament took home £97,500.
And last month, LIV Golf CEO Greg Norman pledged to pay the organization any fines incurred by its members.
“We will protect you, we will refund your fines and we will represent you if you want to take the legal path,” the Australian said in early May.