Golf: Big-hitting DeChambeau joins Saudi-backed LIV Series

Big-hitting Bryson DeChambeau has been limited this year by wrist and hip injuries. PHOTO: AFP

LONDON (REUTERS) - Former US Open champion Bryson DeChambeau has become the latest big name American to join the Saudi-backed LIV Golf Invitational series, organisers confirmed on Friday (June 10).

The big-hitting American, one of the biggest draws on the PGA Tour, joins the likes of six-time major winner Phil Mickelson and Dustin Johnson to get on board with LIV Golf.

“Bryson DeChambeau is an exciting addition to LIV Golf’s supercharged style of play,” LIV Golf chief executive officer Greg Norman said.

“He is passionate about the sport, innovative in his approach and committed to pushing the boundaries in pursuit of excellence.

“He’s not afraid to think outside the box and supports our mission of doing things differently to grow our game.”

The launch of the eight-event LIV Golf series, backed to the tune of US$250 million (S$340 million) by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF), threatens golf’s status quo and has sparked a power struggle at the heart of the sport.

On Thursday, just as the first event got under way at The Centurion Club north of London, the PGA Tour said it was suspending 17 players taking part in the event.

DeChambeau, who won the 2020 US Open, will make his debut in the LIV Invitational at the next event in Portland, Oregon at the end of June.

“The power and energy he brings to the course will deliver added electricity to our competition in Portland and beyond,” Norman said.

While many top players have so far shunned the massive money being offered by LIV Golf, the series now boasts eight major winners in its ranks.

The London event, played over 54 holes, with no cuts and shotgun starts, is the richest ever golf tournament with US$4 million going to the individual winner and US$5 million being shared between the top three teams.

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