Golf-Scott doesn't view LIV Series as 'pure evil' for the game

FILE PHOTO: Sep 25, 2022; Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; International Team golfer Adam Scott hits his tee shot on the eighth hole during the singles match play of the Presidents Cup golf tournament at Quail Hollow Club. Mandatory Credit: Peter Casey-USA TODAY Sports/File Photo

(Reuters) -Former Masters champion Adam Scott said he does not see the controversial LIV Series as "pure evil" for the game of golf and called on the Saudi-backed circuit and the PGA Tour to move on from their feud.

LIV Golf has lured away some of the PGA Tour's top members with huge sums of money, while those who joined the rebel circuit were suspended by the PGA Tour.

LIV has filed a lawsuit accusing the PGA Tour of antitrust violations, while the U.S. tour has filed a counterclaim.

Scott, who announced on Friday he would play the Australian PGA Championship for the first time since 2019, said both circuits had to do what was best for them.

"Maybe because I'm a little less emotive about it, I can be a voice of reason for one side or another," the 2013 Masters champion told reporters on Friday. "I don't necessarily see LIV as just pure evil for the game of golf.

"Hopefully we can get beyond people having shots at each other and each organisation can move on with what they want to do," added Scott.

"I believe the PGA Tour has to do what's best for their product and LIV is going to do what is best for their product. I don't have a problem with either of them."

The LIV series is bankrolled by the Saudi Arabia Public Investment Fund and critics have accused it of being a vehicle for the country to attempt to improve its reputation in the face of criticism of its human rights record.

The PGA Tour has suspended players who joined the rebel tour but Cameron Smith and other LIV players will be allowed to participate in the Nov. 24-27 tournament at Royal Queensland.

Both of Australia's biggest events, the Australian Open and PGA Championship, are now co-sanctioned by the DP World Tour but officials have said LIV players will still be welcome.

While fellow Australians Smith and Marc Leishman have made the switch to LIV, Scott said they had not changed since joining the lucrative series.

"I completely understand anybody doing it," Scott said.

"They have been offered an opportunity and it suits them. More power to them. I really want it to work out for them. They may or may not be taking a risk.

"As far as Cam and Leish recruiting me, they've got plenty of cash now so they're more than welcome to make me an offer ... I probably haven't been able to put myself in a position where I'm willing to give up trying to win major championships."

(Reporting by Manasi Pathak in Bengaluru, additional reporting by Aadi Nair; Editing by Peter Rutherford)

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