The BBC has supposedly removed all doubt about its unwillingness to show golf as reports say they won't even broadcast it for free. Matt Chivers explains

The BBC has stuck another dagger into the future of its golf coverage by reportedly rejecting the chances to show PGA Tour coverage for free.

According to the Telegraph, the BBC has refused on “multiple occasions” to show highlights of the PGA Tour even when the corporation wasn’t required to pay for the rights.

Highlights of The Players Championship at TPC Sawgrass were allegedly on the table, but the BBC has asserted that golf broadcasting “doesn’t suit the demographic” to which the platform wants to appeal.

This news probably won’t shock golf fans who have already been made aware of the BBC’s unwillingness to show golf, particularly the four major championships that attract the largest audiences.

The Telegraph says the PGA Tour was up for allowing the BBC to show highlights of the previous weekend’s action on Monday nights, or whenever it was deemed appropriate without paying rights fees.

The BBC’s rejection seems more damning at a time when players such as Rory McIlroy, Matt Fitzpatrick, and Tyrrell Hatton are flying the flag so well for the home nations in the states.


Golf fans experienced significant frustration at the end of 2022 when Fitzpatrick was neglected by the Sports Personality of the Year award, with golf as a whole being given a very small segment during the awards ceremony.

The Masters is set to be removed from the BBC’s sports coverage for the first time in 56 years and this has effectively banished the sport from the popular terrestrial channel.

Sky Sports has secured the rights to the Masters, the US Open, the PGA Championship, and the Open Championship, with the broadcasting giant often dedicating a whole channel to golf’s oldest major.

2020 marked the first time in more than half a century that live golf wasn’t shown on the BBC. The voices of Peter Alliss, Ken Brown, and Andrew Cotter became synonymous with settling down and enjoying an evening of action.

In a year, and a week at TPC Sawgrass, where the controversy of LIV Golf has dominated again, golf fans will no doubt be disappointed to hear that top-class professional golf will continue to be subscription-based only.

BBC radio will reportedly maintain its coverage of the Masters and there is a glimmering hope that renegotiation could take place with Augusta National.

The year’s first major will play host to a mixture of PGA Tour stars and LIV Golf rebels who have been allowed to compete on the hallowed turf in Georgia while their exemptions still remain.

Will you miss the BBC’s coverage of live golf? Tweet me and let me know!

Matt Chivers

Tour Editor

Matt is NCG's man for all things going on in the world of tour golf. Kent born and bred, Matt is 7 handicap at Royal Cinque Ports and spent many years caddying at Royal St George's before moving north to study history at the University of Liverpool. Away from golf, Matt is an avid Arsenal fan and horse racing enthusiast. He is also keen to point out his surname is pronounced Chiv-ers, not Chive-ers.

Handicap: 7

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