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rory mcilroy pga tour board

Rory McIlroy set to make shock return to PGA Tour Policy Board

Having left the PGA Tour Policy Board in November, it now looks as though Rory McIlroy is dipping his toes back into golf’s political waters…

 

Rory McIlroy is set to re-enter the whirlwind of golf politics in the coming week.

Ewan Murray of the Guardian has reported that the four-time major champion could become a director on the PGA Tour Policy Board and with PGA Tour Enterprises, subject to a vote on Wednesday.

The report says that current player director Webb Simpson tendered his resignation and put forward McIlroy to enter the fray at a point where the PGA Tour and the Public Investment Fund are still at odds in negotiations to unify the game.

Having only resigned from the Policy Board in November to step back from the sport’s political headaches and focus on his game, the Northern Irishman could rejoin a group of five other player directors which include Tiger Woods, Jordan Spieth and Patrick Cantlay.

McIlroy told the Irish Independent at the end of 2023 that his relationship with Cantlay was “average at best” in an interview after both players were involved in a flashpoint at the Ryder Cup in Rome.

The cogs that put McIlroy’s initial Policy Board exodus in motion arguably stemmed from the announcement of the PGA Tour’s framework agreement with the PIF on June 6 last year. This Saudi Arabian sovereign wealth fund bankrolls the LIV Golf League which has emerged as the tour’s direct rival since its inception in June 2022.

McIlroy had spent much of the last two years publicly supporting the PGA Tour in the face of LIV Golf which has lured several big names with big-money contract offers. His Ryder Cup teammates Jon Rahm and Tyrrell Hatton were the breakaway circuit’s most recent big signings ahead of the 2024 season.

But having made his desire for a compromise and his dream of a ‘World Tour’ of sorts abundantly clear since removing himself from the boardroom, McIlroy could step back in to help advance the PGA Tour-PIF talks which significantly developed in the week after the Players Championship in March.

rory mcilroy pga tour board

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Rory McIlroy: PGA Tour Board return incoming

The PGA Tour player directors, including Woods, met with the PIF governor Yasir Al-Rumayyan in the Bahamas as part of a “meet and greet and learn” session.

Details of what was discussed are murky and an ultimate deal was never going to be struck at that moment. There is no timeframe for a deal and any type of joint PGA Tour-LIV schedule might not materialise until 2026.

This would not be McIlroy’s first U-turn during this turbulent period of his career. From saying he hated LIV Golf soon after the June 6 announcement, he now believes LIV rebels such as Brooks Koepka, Bryson DeChambeau and Dustin Johnson should be welcomed back to the circuit with no repercussions.

“If people still have eligibility on this tour and they want to come back and play or you want to try and do something, let them come back. I mean – I think it’s hard to punish people,” he said in January.

“I don’t think there should be a punishment for – obviously I’ve changed my tune on that because I see where golf is and I see that having a diminished PGA Tour and having a diminished LIV Tour or anything else is bad for both parties.

“It would be much better being together and moving forward together for the good of the game. That’s my opinion of it. So to me, the faster that we can all get back together and start to play and start to have the strongest fields possible I think is great for golf.”

NOW READ: Where will Rory McIlroy play next?

NOW READ: Tiger Woods names PGA Tour stars joining his TGL Golf team in 2025

What do you make of this Rory McIlroy Policy Board move? Will it help to bring about a deal between the PGA Tour and the PIF? Tell us on X!

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 spent time with some of the biggest names in the sport.

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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