LIV Golf stars have written to the Official World Golf Rankings (OWGR) asking for past and future events in the Saudi-backed series to be accredited with points to preserve the “integrity” of the system.
An application made in July by the LIV Golf series to be given ranking points remains undecided. During this time five tournaments have been hosted by the controversial series with no ranking points awarded yet – with Open champion Cameron Smith winning last week’s event in Chicago.
Smith has joined six-time major winner Phil Mickelson and the likes of Brooks Koepka and Bryson DeChambeau in a letter addressed to OWGR chairman Peter Dawson, asking for a resolution.
“As the athletes who are ranked, we depend on OWGR not just to qualify for the most important events, including the majors and Olympics, but to tell us where we stand among our peers,” said the letter.
“To maintain trust, we urge you – as one of the true statesmen of sports – to act appropriately to include, on a retroactive basis, the results of LIV Golf events in OWGR’s ranking calculations. An OWGR without LIV would be incomplete and inaccurate, the equivalent of… leaving Belgium, Argentina, and England out of the FIFA rankings.
“Every week that passes without the inclusion of LIV athletes undermines the historical value of OWGR. We call on you to render a positive decision quickly – for the benefit of the integrity of the rankings, the game and all of us who love the sport.”
Without LIV Golf being classified for ranking points their members fear sliding down the order and potentially missing out on places for next year’s major tournaments.
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Rebels have been banned from competing in PGA Tour events. A similar decision by the DP World Tour was challenged in the courts resulting in a decision over their participation being delayed until February.
“As time goes by, LIV golfers automatically decline in the rankings,” added the players’ letter.
“We hope the story we read today about the decision being slow walked so LIV golfers will slide down and to harm LIV is not accurate. For example, Dustin Johnson was ranked 13th on OWGR shortly before he announced he would play in LIV tournaments.
“He now ranks 22nd – despite finishing eighth, third, second, and first in the first four LIV events.”
A source at The OWGR told PA news agency that it does not comment on the application process.