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Justin Rose

Justin Rose: Why I turned down LIV Golf

The Englishman was largely expected to join his pals Henrik Stenson, Lee Westwood and Ian Poulter on the breakaway circuit, but the move never materialised. And now he's explained his reasons for staying put
 

If you take a look at the LIV Golf player roster, a number of them have a profile that resembles that of Justin Rose.

A major champion with a glittering career on both the PGA Tour and the DP World Tour and a player who appears to be entering the later stages of his career.

Rose has no doubt built strong personal bonds with the likes of Ian Poulter, Lee Westwood and Henrik Stenson – with whom he formed a formidable Ryder Cup partnership – since he turned pro in 1998.

But the Englishman revealed after winning the Pebble Beach Pro-Am that participation in major championships and in the Ryder Cup are two priorities that are close to his heart.

Rose could’ve jeopardised involvement in these events if he moved to the breakaway league, but having booked his place at the Masters with his 11th Tour win at the weekend, there was no better time to express his desire to win another of golf’s four big ones.

“Access to the major championships is a large part of my decision to be playing where I’m playing, for sure,” Rose told The Telegraph.

justin rose

“Obviously playing in events like this that have a great history, that give access to iconic golf courses, all of those things. Winning events that really matter.

“Yeah, but first and foremost playing in major championship golf. It’s something – I have won one, but that’s where my childhood dreams lay. Having access to that was really, really important to me going forward.”

Although the 42-year-old chose not to join LIV, he believes its existence has strengthened the fields on the DP World Tour.

LIV Golf players competed in the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship and the Hero Dubai Desert Classic in January. The presence of Patrick Reed at the latter led to a memorable battle which he eventually lost to Rory McIlroy.

Much Like Jon Rahm who has previously maintained that players from LIV Golf remain his friends, Rose has also ensured that no relationships have broken down on his end as a result of the hostility between the PGA Tour and LIV Golf.

“It’s definitely strengthened European Tour events, if you’re looking at it from a field point of view and things like that,” Rose added.

“Part of me thinks you’ve made a decision, you should just get your head down and stick with that.

“But at the same time, a lot of these guys have given a lot to the European Tour over two decades. Maybe that should count for something too.

“So, listen, I try to keep my nose out of it because a lot of them are my friends and they remain my friends. I don’t judge their decision because everyone has their own parameters for what makes a good decision or not.

Justin Rose

“I still continue to stay in touch with them and wish them the best.”

The hearing with Sports Resolutions UK started in London on Monday where we await a verdict as to whether the DP World Tour rightfully rejected the release requests of 13 players last summer.

This hearing could also provide clues as to whether LIV Golf players can continue to play on the DP World Tour and qualify for the Ryder Cup.

Rose has made the ideal start in qualifying for captain Luke Donald’s European side as they attempt to win the trophy that they devastatingly lost to America in 2021.

“I felt like what was really important to me was getting off to a good start on the PGA Tour so I wasn’t under pressure later in the season, so I could turn my attention to the Ryder Cup and the European Tour as and when that becomes the important part of the phase of the season,” he said.

“So the plan’s gone pretty perfectly, to be honest with you. Three really good solid weeks out here and I built a platform now to be able to look at the rest of the year in a much more positive light and start earning points.

“Yeah, (I’d) obviously love to play my way onto the team. But wanted to be a player that if I’m playing well, Luke has to consider and feel good about being part of this team.”

Will Justin Rose qualify for the European Ryder Cup team? Tweet me and let me know!

Matt Chivers

Matt Chivers

Now on the wrong side of 25, Matt has been playing golf since the age of 13 and was largely inspired to take up the game by countless family members who played golf during his childhood.

Matt is a member at Royal Cinque Ports in Deal playing off a 5 handicap, just a pitching wedge away from his hometown of Dover where he went to school and grew up. He has previously been a member at Etchinghill and Walmer and Kingsdown in Kent.

Having studied history at the University of Liverpool, Matt went on to pass his NCTJ Exams in Manchester a year later to fulfil his lifelong ambition of becoming a journalist. He picked up work experience along the way at places such as the Racing Post, the Independent, Sportsbeat and the Lancashire Evening Post.

Matt joined NCG in February 2023 and is the website’s main source of tour news, features and opinion. He has reported live from events such as The Open, the Ryder Cup and The Players Championship, having also interviewed and spoken to the likes of Rory McIlroy, Tommy Fleetwood, Lee Westwood, Graeme McDowell, Henrik Stenson, to name just a few.

Consuming tour golf on what is a 24/7 basis, you can come to Matt for informed views on the game and the latest updates on the PGA Tour, DP World Tour, LPGA Tour, Ladies European Tour and LIV Golf.

What’s in Matt’s bag: Cobra LTDx LS driver, Cobra LTDx 3-wood, TaylorMade P7MC irons, Ping Glide 4.0 wedges, Odyssey putter.

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