LIV Golf chief executive Greg Norman says “I appreciate Rory falling on his sword” after the world No 2’s change in tone towards the breakaway series; McIlroy says he has now “accepted reality” that LIV is “part of our sport”
Last Updated: 05/01/24 8:46pm
Greg Norman has described Rory McIlroy’s about-turn on LIV Golf as a “hugely significant turning point” for the sport.
The Australian, LIV’s chief executive and a two-time major winner, termed the softened stance taken by McIlroy in an interview published this week as the world No 2 “falling on his sword”, a move he thanked him for.
Appearing on the Stick to Football podcast with Sky Bet, McIlroy conceded he had been “too judgemental” in his heavily-critical remarks aimed at the players who originally defected to LIV in 2022 and had now come to accept that the series was here to stay.
The Northern Irishman also notably said he “would love” for LIV to become like cricket’s Indian Premier League and allow players to play in team events during bespoke windows in the regular season.
The four-time major champion previously accused some of those who jumped ship as being duplicitous and that he would rather retire than join LIV.
“The reason I say I appreciate Rory falling on his sword, to some degree, is the fact that he did judge us by not knowing the facts,” Norman said on LIV’s Fairway to Heaven podcast.
“He judged us on other people’s thoughts and opinions. So, I say, ‘hey, thank you, Rory’. We all knew it was going to work within the golf ecosystem.
“We all wanted to be there, we are going to be there he said that. To me, this is a hugely significant turning point for everybody.”
In June last year, the PGA Tour, Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF) and DP World Tour announced a framework agreement to house their commercial operations in a new for-profit entity.
While they were unable to finalise a definitive partnership agreement by a December 31 deadline the PGA Tour wants to extend negotiations into 2024.
Phil Mickelson, one of the high-profile players to originally join LIV nearly two years ago, wrote on social media on Thursday that he welcomed McIlroy’s remarks and said it was now “time for me and others to let go of our hostilities and work towards a positive future” for golf.
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