Sergio García, the Ryder Cup’s all-time leading points-scorer, will rule himself out of playing for Europe again by quitting the DP World Tour.
The Spaniard, who joined the Saudi rebel circuit for more than £50 million, revealed his intention to resign from his home circuit after finishing up the 150th Open Championship, saying, “I don't want to play where I’m not wanted.”
García last month handed back his PGA Tour card before Sawgrass HQ banned him for competing in the LIV Golf Series, but expressed his desire to continue on the DP World Tour and carry on playing in the biennial match.
Yet after receiving a £100,000 fine from chief executive Keith Pelley as well as a one-tournament ban from the Scottish Open, García has decided enough is enough and will walk away from the circuit on which he has appeared for more than two decades. García indicated that he is not impressed with the Tour’s strategic alliance with the PGA Tour.
"I like to play where they want me and on the European Tour right now I don't feel loved,” García told Spanish reporters after a 73 left him on two-under at St Andrews and outside the top 60. “I feel a little sorry about the Ryder Cup, but the way I'm playing I'm not here to play Ryder either.
“I wanted to continue on the European Tour, but not in this way. There are things that can be done differently. That is not the best way. What they are doing makes me very sad because the European Tour is going to become the fifth Tour in the world.”
The BMW International three weeks ago appears to have been the turning point for Garcia. Telegraph Sport exclusively reported that on hearing about the sanctions, García went into a rage in the locker room, shouting to other players “this Tour is s---, you’re all f-----, should have taken the Saudi money”. Scotland’s Bob MacIntyre was there and later tweeted: "Amazing how fast you can lose respect for someone that you’ve looked up to all your life."
However, García stated that his words were not the problem but instead pointed the finger at Thomas Bjorn, the 2018 Ryder Cup captain, who allegedly told the LIV golfers they were not welcome. "I am very sorry. That's not pretty and I'm old enough not to put up with things like that,” he said.
When contacted by Telegraph Sport, Bjorn expressed bemusement at the accusations, the Dane saying he “did not mention LIV” to García when he saw him at the Munich event. “We actually hugged,” Bjorn said.
But García is adamant he has been slighted, playing a victim’s card that those who have followed his turbulent career might find familiar.
“I have given more than half my life to the European Tour and I wanted to continue playing it, but I am not going to be where they don't want me,” he said. “It is very sad to receive such treatment for a personal and professional decision. If they treat you like that, it's not worth continuing.
“It is the first time that he made a decision thinking only of me and my family without leaving the European Tour because I didn't want to leave it. We will enjoy what we have and we will play where they want us. I haven't officially communicated it yet, but I'm going to do it.”