PGA Tour and LIV Golf agree shock merger

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The PGA Tour has agreed to merge with Saudi Arabian-backed rival circuit LIV Golf in a deal that will end the split in the sport.

The surprise announcement comes after a year of unprecedented disruption in the men’s game following LIV’s launch.

It means pending litigation between the tours will now be halted and they will move forward as a larger enterprise.

“This is a historic day for the game we all know and love,” said PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan.

An agreement has been signed that will combine the PGA Tour and LIV’s commercial operations and rights into a new, yet-to-be-named for-profit company.

The agreement includes the DP World Tour, formerly known as the European Tour.

The emergence of the LIV circuit has fractured men’s professional golf over the last year, with several top players lured by huge prize funds and no-cut events, which feature a team format.

LIV Golf is backed by the Saudi Arabia Public Investment Fund (PIF), an entity controlled by the Saudi crown prince and which has been embroiled in anti-trust lawsuits with the PGA Tour over the last year.

“This is a momentous day – to partner in this new entity is energizing and exciting,” said DP World Tour chief executive Keith Pelley.

Monahan, his counterpart on the PGA Tour, confirmed that the team element to LIV’s format will remain in some form going forward.

“This transformational partnership recognises the immeasurable strength of the PGA Tour’s history, legacy and pro-competitive model and combines with it the DP World Tour and LIV – including the team golf concept – to create an organisation that will benefit golf’s players, commercial and charitable partners and fans,” he added.

More to follow.

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