Rory McIlroy LIV June 4, 2023: Dublin, Ohio, USA; Rory McIIroy watches his tee shot on the first hole during the final round of the Memorial Tournament at Muirfield Village Golf Club.

While PGA star Rory McIlroy did not like the initial reports of the so-called merger between the PGA Tour and LIV Golf, he’s come to accept the framework of the agreement.

Under terms of the deal the PGA negotiated with the Saudi Arabian Public Investment Fund, all litigation between the two sides will end, and the PGA Tour will hold controlling interest in the new venture.

“The way I’ve looked at it is if the PIF are really interested in golf and they want to get in the system, at least if we provide them with a pathway to play within the system where they are not taking over the sport,” McIlroy told Off The Ball’s Golf Weekly podcast.

Many golf insiders feared that once the merger takes place, LIV Golf would take over the sport and make the PGA Tour disappear. This new deal helps ensure that doesn’t happen.

“You see everything else happening in the world, you see big private equity companies in the America taking their money — the biggest companies in the world,” McIlroy said. “There’s a lot of whataboutism and all that stuff, but at the same time, if this is what is happening, then the way I’ve framed it is that the world has decided for me in a way.

“I mean, I’ve met the guys involved in PIF, I’ve sat with Yasir (Al-Rumayyan, governor of the Saudi PIF), I’ve talked to him. I don’t know what his beliefs are and whatever, but at the same time I’ve lived in Dubai and the people there who are some of my closest friends have the same beliefs as some of these people who we are criticizing, so I’d be a hypocrite if I’m not criticizing my friends in Dubai then why am I criticizing these people? There are so many ways you can look at it.”


About Stacey Mickles

Stacey is a 1995 graduate of the University of Alabama who has previously worked for other publications such as Sportskeeda and Saturday Down South.