Phil Mickelson joins PGA Championship, US Open, requests release for LIV Golf Invitational Series

Phil Mickelson has signed up for next month’s PGA Championship and US Open in June, and his agents have requested a release from the PGA Tour to allow the six-time major champion to play in the first event of the Saudi-funded LIFE Golf Invitational Series in London in June.

In a statement, Mickelson’s longtime agent, Steve Loy of Sportfive, said he still has not decided whether he will play in any of the events.

“Phil currently has no concrete plans for when and where he will play,” Loy said. “Any action taken is in no way a reflection of a final decision, but rather to keep all options open.”

Monday was the deadline for players to request a conflicting event release from the PGA Tour to play in the first LIV Golf Invitational on 9-11. June.

Mickelson, 51, has not played in an official tour event since missing the cut at the Farmers Insurance Open in Torrey Pines in late January. Mickelson has been embroiled in controversy since author Alan Shipnuck published an excerpt from his forthcoming unauthorized biography of him, in which Mickelson criticized the PGA Tour and said he was involved in drafting an employment contract for a Saudi-funded breakaway league. public investment. Fund. In it, Mickelson described the Saudis as “scary,” but said he looked past their controversial history of human rights violations to get leverage with the PGA Tour.

Mickelson’s comments received widespread criticism, including from other PGA Tour professionals, which led to him apologizing days later.

Several of his longtime sponsors, including Amstel Light, KPMG and Workday, ended their relationship with him. Callaway also put his relationship with him on pause. The American Express Tournament said he would no longer serve as its host and that it would no longer be affiliated with his fund.

Mickelson, a triple Masters champion, did not participate in the tournament earlier this month for the first time since 1994. Augusta National Golf Club president Fred Ridley said Mickelson was qualified to play as a former champion, but Mickelson chose not to compete. . It would have been his 30th start in the Masters.

Mickelson is the defending PGA Championship winner after unexpectedly becoming the oldest major champion with his 50 years in May 2021 with his victory at the Ocean Course on Kiawah Island, South Carolina.

The PGA Championship is played at Southern Hills Country Club in Tulsa, Oklahoma, on the 19th-22nd. May. The US Open is played at The Country Club in Brookline, Massachusetts, on 16-19. June.

The LIV Golf Invitational Series, led by the double winner of the Open Championship, Greg Norman, announced in March that it will host a series of eight events this year with seven regular season tournaments. The series concludes with a team championship match-play final at the Trump National Doral in Miami, which is owned by former US President Donald Trump, on 27-30. October, the series announced Monday.

Total prize money for the eight events will, according to LIV Golf Investments, be $ 255 million, and the seven regular season tournaments will have total wallets of $ 25 million, which would be the richest in professional golf, with $ 20 million in individual prizes and $ 5 million for the three best team. The top three people after the seven regular season events will also share a $ 30 million bonus.

The season-ending team-match-play championship will provide an additional $ 50 million in prizes to 12 teams in a knockout-style event. The four players on the winning team will split $ 16 million, followed by $ 10 million for the second and $ 8 million for the third.

“There could not be a more perfect place to host this year’s biggest event on a course with such a long history of professional golfers, and we are delighted to add another piece of history to this famous destination,” Norman said in a statement. on Monday. “I’m really looking forward to October to see these teams compete against each other to compete for the biggest prize purse in the history of the tournament.”

As the opening of the LIV event in London is in conflict with the RBC Canadian Open in Ontario on 9-12. June, PGA Tour players had to be released from the tour in order to compete in the LIV tournament.

PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan told players after the PGA Championship in May last year that anyone who joined the Saudi-funded league would be suspended and potentially face life imprisonment from the PGA Tour.

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