Golf-PGA Tour/LIV partnership will be good for game, says McIlroy

FILE PHOTO: May 21, 2023; Rochester, New York, USA; Rory McIlroy waits to putt on the 18th green during the final round of the PGA Championship golf tournament at Oak Hill Country Club. Mandatory Credit: Adam Cairns-USA TODAY Sports/File Photo

TORONTO (Reuters) - The new partnership between the PGA Tour and Saudi-backed LIV Golf circuit will ultimately be good for professional golf, world number three Rory McIlroy said on Wednesday.

McIlroy, speaking during his pre-tournament news conference ahead of this week's Canadian Open, said he knew discussions between the organisations were going on but did not expect a deal to happen so quickly.

"I think ultimately when I try remove myself from the situation and I look at the bigger picture and I look at 10 years down the line I think ultimately this is going to be good for the game of professional golf," said McIlroy.

"I think it unifies it and it secures its financial future. There's mixed emotions in there as well."

Northern Ireland's McIlroy, a four-times major champion, was speaking a day after the PGA Tour, DP World Tour and the Saudi-backed LIV circuit, who have been involved in a bitter fight that has split the sport, announced a shock agreement to merge and form one unified commercial entity.

(Reporting by Frank Pingue and Steve Keating in Toronto; Editing by Kirsten Donovan and Ed Osmond)

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