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New golf series: Phil Mickelson is now starting the Saudi tour after all

Golf Controversial tournament series

Now superstar Phil Mickelson is starting on the Saudi tour

As of 2:52 p.m

Phil Mickelson returns from his golf break

Phil Mickelson returns from his golf break

Quelle: pa/empics/Richard Sellers

Just before the start of the LIV Golf Invitational Series, funded by Saudi Arabia, there is a prominent newcomer. Phil Mickelson has announced his participation. The US star returns from his break for the controversial tournament series – and asks for forgiveness.

US-golf star Phil Mickelson now wants to start at the opening tournament of the controversial new Tour LIV Golf Invitational Series. “I’m thrilled to be joining LIV Golf,” the six-time major winner said on Twitter. “I’m ready to come back to play the game I love. But after 32 years, this new path is a new beginning.”

The first of eight tournaments on the tour financed by Saudi Arabia starts this Thursday in London. Germany’s top golfer Martin Kaymer is also on the starting list for the opening event of the multi-million dollar tour. The final will be held on a plaza belonging to former US President Donald Trump.

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For the 51-year-old Mickelson it is the first golf tournament since he took a break in early February. “First and foremost, I would like to once again apologize to the many people I offended and hurt with my comments a few months ago,” Mickelson wrote on Twitter. The six-time major champion had clearly denounced the human rights violations of the Saudi Arabian regime. “We know they’re Khashoggi (Saudi Arabian journalist; ed.) have killed. They’re executing people over there because they’re gay,” Mickelson said at the time.

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Nevertheless, he is considered a big advocate of the LIV tour and toyed with participating the whole time. As a competing product, the tournament series is “a unique opportunity to reshape the way the PGA Tour works.” The Californian broke with the well-known US tour and accused her of “disgusting greed”, among other things. Now Mickelson agrees to forgiving tones: “I’m incredibly grateful for what the sport and the PGA Tour have given me,” wrote the Californian. However, it is time for a new challenge.

$20 million for the first tournament alone

Mickelson now finds that in the new tournament series. Much to the delight of Australian golf icon Greg Norman, CEO and founder of the new tour. “Phil Mickelson is one of the greatest golfers of his generation. We’re glad we have him,” said the 67-year-old.

Similar to Mickelson, Dustin Johnson thinks so too. The participation of the former number one in the world rankings on the LIV tour had been known for a long time. Now it has become public that his membership on the PGA Tour is giving up. “I don’t want to play for the rest of my life. It gives me the opportunity to do what I want to do,” Johnson said. Due to his decision, the 37-year-old is no longer allowed to take part in the Ryder Cup.

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Nelly (left) and Jessica Korda conquer the world of golf.

The invitation tournaments of the LIV tour are played over three days instead of four. In addition, the events come with very high prize money. The tournament in London alone is endowed with 20 million US dollars – the winner gets four million US dollars. At worst, a golfer takes home $120,000. The PGA and the DP World Tour (formerly European Tour) had already threatened to sanction participants in the LIV series. How these penalties could turn out is still open. Parallel to the tournament in London, there is a competition in Toronto on the PGA Tour. There, at 8.7 million US dollars, not even half as much prize money is paid out as on the lucrative LIV tour.

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