Jon Rahm Calls For US And European Ryder Cup Teams To Make Joint Decision On LIV Rebels Eligibility


Jon Rahm has called for the US and European Ryder Cup teams to make a joint decision on whether or not they allow LIV golfers to play in the match in Rome this autumn.

The Americans have already ruled that no defectors from the PGA Tour will be eligible, but the picture on the European side is not yet clear.

The latter’s captain Luke Donald has repeatedly refused to be drawn on that scenario prior to next month’s court hearing, which pits a number of LIV recruits, including Cup hero Ian Poulter, against the DP World Tour over their right to play on the European circuit.

US captain Zach Johnson (left) and Europe's captain Luke Donald (right)

Jon Rahm (left) has called for both Ryder Cup teams (pictured right captains, Zach Johnson and Luke Donald) to make a joint decision on allowing LIV Golf defectors to play

Whichever way the ruling falls, Rahm, who has previously stated his belief that LIV stars should be involved in the Cup, wants to avoid a situation where the two teams adopt differing approaches. On the European side, the LIV talent pool would include the Cup’s record point scorer Sergio Garcia and Adrian Otaegui, who would currently fall within the automatic qualifying places.

Speaking ahead of the PGA Tour’s first ‘elevated’ event of the season, the Sentry Tournament of Champions in Hawaii, Rahm said: ‘Listen, there’s some people that are going to have to make some tough choices, right? A little bit of that is out of my reach.

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‘My guess is I hope the PGA of America and European Tour make a decision together. I don’t think it would be smart to have one team allowing LIV players and one not to.’ 

If LIV Golf rebels are banned, veterans Lee Westwood (L) and Ian Poulter (R) would miss out

If LIV Golf rebels are banned, veterans Lee Westwood (L) and Ian Poulter (R) would miss out 

Europe's LIV talent pool would include the Cup's record point scorer Sergio Garcia (right)

Europe’s LIV talent pool would include the Cup’s record point scorer Sergio Garcia (right)

The world No. 5 added: ‘Even if they decide not to on that side, I think it’s going to give an opportunity for a lot of great young players to show up and have the chance in Europe, right?

new balance

‘It’s just going to be an opportunity for all of them. We saw a younger US team last Ryder Cup, and they did what they did.

‘So I’m hoping these younger guys who have grown up watching the Ryder Cup and seeing their idols do what they do, let’s say, it energizes the team a little bit in any manner, and we show up there to win.’ 

Rahm is joined in Hawaii by the American world No. 4 Patrick Cantlay, who has been listed among LIV’s top targets ahead of their second season. He claimed ahead of Thursday’s first round that he has no plans to join the breakaway ‘as of now’, but in comments that will continue to draw attention his way, he spoke favourably about LIV’s wider impact on the golfing landscape.

He said: ‘I think (the speculation) is because I haven’t been too vocal one way or the other. Guys, for the most part, seem like they’re pretty polarized on this issue, and I view it as it’s been a competition for top talent, like any other business.

‘But I have no plans to do that as of now, which has been my stance for, you know, basically since the whole time.

‘I think that it’s been interesting how much it’s changed golf, as in everyone’s trying to innovate and make golf better all of a sudden. I think that will be a massive benefit for the viewer because I think now more than ever competition is making people evolve and making people grow and think outside the box. So I think it’s been really good and will be good for professional golf in the long run. But it’s been such a polarizing issue that it’s made people feel emotional about something that has been the same for such a long time.’



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