Billy Horschel did not hold back at the BMW PGA Championship on Tuesday.
He called several LIV Golf Invitational Series members by name ahead of the DP World Tour event in Wentworth, clearly angry they are trying to compete there after they left for the controversial Saudi-backed venture.
“Abraham Ancer, Talor Gooch… You’ve never played this tournament, you’ve never played the [European Tour]. Why are you here?” Horschel said, via The Associated Press. “You’re only here for one reason and that’s to get world rankings because you don’t have any.
“It’s pretty hypocritical to come here and play outside of LIV when your main thing was to spend more time with family and [wanting] less golf.”
LIV Golf members have been banned from the PGA Tour and from most DP World Tour events (conventionally known as the European Tour), although they will be allowed to take the field at Wentworth this week if they are in the top 60 in the Official World Golf Rankings – something that cannot be improved by playing in LIV Golf events. It is one of the first times since the league’s inception that the two groups of golfers play in the same tournament.
LIV players who play this week will also be fined by the DP World Tour.
Horschel – the defending champion of the BMW PGA Championship who is this year at +2500 to win again at BetMGM – was not so hard on players like Lee Westwood and Ian Poulter, who left for LIV at the end of their careers. But he still doesn’t want them in the field this week.
Jon Rahm, who was listed at +800 on BetMGM to win, didn’t name names on Tuesday. However, he was right with Horschel in his criticism.
It’s not fair to see people left off the field for LIV golfers like his friend Alfredo Garcia-Heredia.
“What I don’t understand is that some players who have never shown an interest in the European Tour have never shown an interest in playing this event, are given a chance just because they can get points in the world rankings and hopefully reach majors next year . Rahm said via The Associated Press.
“A perfect example – a good friend of mine is now first on the entry list. It doesn’t hurt me, but it annoys me that someone who has played more than 20… [DP World Tour] events this year will not get a chance to play a flagship event because some people who have earned it to some extent are given a chance when they don’t care about the event.”
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