Golf-Golf's unification is inevitable, says DP World chief Pelley

  • Golf
  • Monday, 04 Mar 2024

Golf - European Tour - BMW PGA Championship - Wentworth Golf Club, Virginia Water, Britain - September 7, 2022 CEO of the PGA European Tour, Keith Pelley during a press conference Action Images via Reuters/Paul Childs

(Reuters) - It is a matter of time before the rival tours in professional golf come together to form a unified entity, outgoing DP World Tour Chief Executive Keith Pelley said on Sunday as the PGA Tour and LIV Golf continue working on plans to join forces.

Pelley, who will be replaced by the current European Tour Deputy CEO and Executive Director Guy Kinnings on April 2, has been advocating for a deal between the PGA Tour and LIV, backed by the Saudi Public Investment Fund (PIF).

He told The Times newspaper that he remains "convinced the game will be unified".

"Whether it be in six months, a year, two years or 10 years, I think people are coming to the realisation that a collective product is in the best interest of global golf," Pelley said.

"It is the only way growth and prize funds continue at this level. It is inevitable."

Pelley, who is highly unlikely to witness the deal before his exit, moves into the role of President and CEO of MLSE, whose brands include the NHL's Toronto Maple Leafs and NBA team Toronto Raptors.

"Would I love to stay and see it through? Yes. But you can't control timing," he added.

Oil-rich Saudi Arabia divided the world of golf when it launched LIV Golf in 2022.

Last June, the PGA Tour, PIF and Europe-based DP World Tour announced a framework agreement to house their commercial operations in a for-profit entity called PGA Tour Enterprises and tensions between the players began to cool.

(Reporting by Anita Kobylinska in Gdansk)

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