'He’s Been A Bit Bitter About That' - Player On Norman's PGA Tour 'Vendetta'
Gary Player is never one to shy away from saying what he is thinking, with the nine-time Major winner regularly voicing his views and opinions. Now, in an interview with the Daily Mail, the 87-year-old has voiced his thoughts on LIV Golf, specifically their CEO, Greg Norman, with Player believing Norman has a "vendetta" against the PGA Tour.
Stating that "I don’t like 54-hole tournaments, nor the team side of it," Player then claimed in the interview that "Greg (Norman) has basically had a vendetta against the PGA Tour for a long time," with the South African adding "he wanted to start a world tour (in the Nineties) and was deprived of it. He’s been a bit bitter about that."
Both men are part of the World Golf Hall of Fame and, according to Player, he "gets on very well with Greg," but added, "I think he has let it (vendetta) creep into some of these decisions, which I think is a pity."
Over the past 12 months, the South African has voiced his thoughts on LIV Golf on multiple occasions. Back in June 2022, Player said that "I don't blame them for playing there (LIV). There's not a lot of them who can win on their regular Tour anymore, so they are wisely taking the money."
Six months later, he then called for the PGA Tour to wave their white flag and end their feud with LIV Golf, with Player now reiterating the claims he made late last year. "I don’t blame those who went,’ he says. ‘Most who left do not believe they can win on the regular tour any more. Louis Oosthuizen is probably the finest gentleman I’ve met in golf and he’s never won a tournament in America, so of course he’s going to take their money. Dustin Johnson and Cameron Smith, I was surprised they took the money but that’s their choice."
Currently, LIV players aren't allowed to feature in PGA Tour events, with bans being put in place for those who jumped to the Saudi-backed league. Prior to the WGC Match Play in Austin, it was reported that several LIV Golf players, including Patrick Reed, had been denied the chance to play in the tournament.
According to Player, this is correct, with the 87-year-old stating "I believe once you’ve decided that’s your tour, you should not be allowed to come back and play regular tournaments." However, he later added that "the freedom to choose is important. The thing that irks me is it’s become a damn war. (I) Can’t stand it."