Ben Jared/PGA TOUR by way of Getty Pictures
The PGA Tour is reportedly going to look fairly completely different at sure occasions in 2024.
In accordance with Eamon Lynch of Golfweek, the PGA Tour board authorized decreased fields to 70 and 78 gamers with no 36-hole cuts for designated occasions subsequent yr outdoors of the 4 majors, The Gamers Championship and FedEx Cup playoff tournaments.
Lynch famous the concept of designated occasions with elevated purses of at the very least $20 million was “a direct response to the menace posed by LIV Golf.” They have been put in place this yr, though the sphere dimension and no-cut adjustments will begin in 2024.
Whereas LIV Golf has been criticized as a sportswashing enterprise that’s bankrolled by Saudi Arabia’s Public Funding Fund partly to distract from the nation’s human rights file, numerous headline names left the PGA Tour to affix it, together with Phil Mickelson, Cameron Smith, Brooks Koepka and Bryson DeChambeau.
These designated occasions with smaller fields and the chance to make more cash outdoors of the 4 prestigious majors will, in idea, enable the PGA Tour to maintain the game’s greatest gamers on the circuit.
“Should you have a look at the NBA’s trajectory during the last 20 years, they’ve constructed that league round their greatest gamers and their stars, not across the twelfth man on the group,” Rory McIlroy beforehand told reporters. “However as a result of they’ve constructed that league up across the stars, the twelfth man on the group does method higher than he used to. In order that’s kind of the best way I have been making an attempt to inform it.”
But considerations may come from gamers who aren’t thought-about stars and constantly on the highest of the world rankings since smaller fields would reduce into their possibilities to play and become profitable on the tour.
With that in thoughts, Lynch reported the plan is to create alternatives for gamers to earn their spots in such designated occasions.
The fields will function the highest 50 gamers who make the BMW Championship primarily based on the earlier season’s FedEx Cup playoffs, the highest 10 gamers who aren’t eligible that method and 5 spots for the highest point-earners within the earlier three non-designated tournaments. What’s extra, any PGA Tour match winner might be eligible for the remaining designated occasions of that season.
There may also be the flexibility to qualify primarily based on the highest 30 of the World Golf Rankings and even sponsor exemptions, which might create paths for injured gamers returning or notable rivals similar to Tiger Woods to take part.
“I’ve had tons of conversations with guys which might be frightened about what occasions they’ll play subsequent yr and all that,” McIlroy mentioned. “The one factor I mentioned, ‘Look, nobody’s making an attempt to screw the underside half of the tour right here.’ If something, we’re making an attempt to elevate it up.”
There have already been three designated occasions this yr—Jon Rahm gained the Sentry Match of Champions and Genesis Invitational, and Scottie Scheffler was victorious on the WM Phoenix Open.