Tiger Woods has been out of competition since his abrupt third-round withdrawal at the Masters, but he certainly hasn’t been out of the game.
Woods, a generational force in golf, has emerged as one of the strongest voices on the PGA Tour in its fight with rival LIV Golf. Now, at the urging of his frustrated fellow players, he will have a seat at the table as the tour plots its future after a stunning move two months ago to seek a business deal with Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund.
The tour has expanded the number of player representatives on the Policy Board, adding a sixth seat for Woods and giving the players a majority voice on tour matters. Forty-one players, including Woods, wrote to commissioner Jay Monahan in an effort to secure more input on tour decisions.
The action follows deep mistrust after the secret agreement forged by Monahan and tour representatives Ed Herlihy and Jimmy Dunne with the PIF, which caught the players by surprise when it was announced June 6.
Woods, 47, whose 82 tour victories remains tied with the late Sam Snead for the all-time record, was instrumental in developing the model of $20 million “designated” tournaments for 2023 in response to LIV Golf’s incursion.
“He takes it seriously that he is going to be a part of paving the way for the future … of the PGA Tour,” said Justin Thomas, a two-time PGA champion who was one of the signatories.
Monahan, who has reached out to players since having returned recently from an undisclosed monthlong medical absence, supported the players’ move for more of a voice and promised “to restore any lost trust or confidence.”
For his part, Woods said Monahan “has my confidence.” READ MORE
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American Stewart Cink and Spaniard José María Olazábal were named assistant captains for their respective U.S. and European Ryder Cup teams, officials announced.
Cink will join Steve Stricker, Davis Love III, Jim Furyk and Fred Couples on U.S. captain Zach Johnson’s staff. Cink, 50, whose eight PGA Tour victories include the 2009 Open Championship, competed in five consecutive Ryder Cups in 2002-10, compiling a 5-7-7 record for U.S. squads that went 1-4 against Europe in that stretch.
Olazábal, 57, will join Denmark’s Thomas Bjørn, Italy’s Edoardo Molinari and Belgium’s Nicolas Colsaerts on captain Luke Donald’s staff. Olazábal won 23 times on the European Tour, including two Masters titles. He competed in seven Ryder Cups, compiling an 18-8-5 record. With Donald on his team, Olazábal captained Europe’s 2012 Ryder Cup squad to a stunning comeback victory known as the “Miracle at Medinah.”
The biennial match will be played September 29-October 1 at Marco Simone in Rome. The Americans lead the series, 27-14-2, but the Europeans have won nine of the past 13 matches, including six in a row on home turf. READ MORE and MORE
Wyndham Clark has qualified for the American Ryder Cup team on points, U.S. team officials confirmed on the team’s Twitter account. Clark, the reigning U.S. Open champion, ranks second to Scottie Scheffler, the world’s top-ranked player, in the U.S. points standings. Qualifying ends August 20 at the final round of the BMW Championship, when the top six will make the team. Captain Zach Johnson will make six at-large selections on Aug. 29, after the Tour Championship. READ MORE
Those ubiquitous hole-in-one photos, featuring smiling golfers holding the lucky ball pulled from the hole where their dreams have come true, serve as more than a centerpiece on a golfer’s vanity wall. They also can work as a valuable law-enforcement tool.
Robert Moore, 75, of The Villages, Florida, was arrested in connection with the road-rage death of an 87-year-old resident of the sprawling retirement community north of Orlando after being identified by an investigator who saw Moore featured in a Villages-News.com story about his hole-in-one. Moore was charged with aggravated manslaughter and released from the Sumter County Detention Center on $30,000 bond. READ MORE
Angel Cabrera, a two-time major champion, was paroled from jail in his native Argentina after serving two years of a three-year, 10-month sentence on domestic-violence convictions against a former wife and an ex-girlfriend. Cabrera, 53, won the 2007 U.S. Open and the 2009 Masters. READ MORE
The number of adult golfers has grown by 10 million since 2016, to 39.6 million, according to research compiled by the R&A in its affiliated markets in Europe, Canada, Asia, Africa, the Caribbean, Central America, South America, the Middle East and Oceania. READ MORE
Ron Cross, a former PGA Tour and Augusta National executive who was one of LIV Golf’s key startup hires, no longer remains in his role as chief events officer at the Saudi-funded circuit, Sports Illustrated’s Bob Harig reported. In a statement, Cross said he was “surprised in the change of direction” at LIV. READ MORE
Led by sales gains in Titleist clubs and balls, Acushnet Holdings Corp. reported strong second-quarter financial results. READ MORE
Compiled by Steve Harmon