Rory McIlroy wants freedom in career, not interested in Premier Golf League

Yahoo Sports

Rory McIlroy is out on the idea of the Premier Golf League, a proposed league that would compete with the PGA Tour and European Tour and ideally launch as early as 2022.

McIlroy wants autonomy Premier League can’t provide

McIlroy, the No. 1 ranked men’s golfer in the world, said he’s not interested in the proposed league, in part because he said he would lose the autonomy he enjoys about the current set up.


“The more I've thought about it, the more I don't like it,” McIlroy said.

“The one thing as a professional golfer in my position that I value is the fact that I have autonomy and freedom over everything I do. I pick and choose — this is a perfect example.

“Some guys this week made the choice not to come to Mexico [for the WGC-Mexico Championship]. If you go and play this other golf league, you're not going to have that choice. I read a thing the other day where it said if you take the money they can tell you what to do. And I think that's my thing, I've never been one for being told what to do, and I like to have that autonomy and freedom over my career, and I feel like I would give that up by going to play this other league.

“For me, I'm out. My position is I'm against it until there may come a day that I can't be against it. If everyone else goes, I might not have a choice, but at this point, I don't like what they're proposing.”

The Premier Golf League proposal was announced in January by the World Golf Group. It would create an 18-tournament tour with $10 million purses at each event and 48 players competing throughout. There would be no cut and both individual and team-league formats.

Rory McIlroy said he won't participate in the proposed Premier Golf League unless he has to do so. (AP Photo/Denis Poroy)
Rory McIlroy said he won't participate in the proposed Premier Golf League unless he has to do so. (AP Photo/Denis Poroy)

McIlroy doesn’t believe Tiger Woods would switch

Tiger Woods said last week he and his team are looking into the Premier Golf League after he was approached by them to play. He never committed to it either way, adding it was like any other event proposal that has come up over the years.

McIlroy told ESPN he doesn’t believe the star would switch since Woods has already said he wants to play 12 times a year. The proposal has garnered mixed reactions from golfers. Both Brooks Koepka and Dustin Johnson said they have been approached about the idea.

PGA Tour commissioner voices disapproval of Premier League

PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan is not a fan of the proposed tour and attacked the funding behind it in a letter sent to golfers in late January. He said the leaders are “securing player commitments first as they have no sponsorship or media offerings or rights” and referenced “funding from Saudi interests.”

The league would not conflict with the four major championships, Monahan said, but would clearly interfere with the other stops on the PGA Tour.

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