McIlroy slams Mickelson’s comments as “naive, selfish, egotistical, ignorant”

Rory McIlroy has slammed Phil Mickelson for using the new Saudi Golf League as leverage against the PGA Tour.

The proposed Saudi Golf League looks like it’s on its last legs with the news that Bryson DeChambeau and Dustin Johnson will be sticking with the PGA Tour. Despite rumours that they’d already signed contracts with the new league, both players put out statements to say they’ll be continuing to play.

Rory McIlroy was never interested in the league having expressed his concern that it was being funded by LIV Investments, itself funded by the Saudi Arabian government.

Apart from Greg Norman who was positioned as the face of the new tour, Phil Mickelson was perhaps its biggest advocate and not deterred by the who was handing over the money and the Saudi government’s terrible human rights record.

But in an extract from an upcoming biography written by golf writer Alan Shipnuck, Mickelson admitted his fear for the backers of the new league and was only doing it to leverage what he could out of the PGA Tour.

“Knowing all of this, why would I even consider it? Because this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to reshape how the PGA Tour operates.

“They’ve been able to get by with manipulative, coercive, strong-arm tactics because we, the players, had no recourse. As nice a guy as [PGA Tour boss Jay Monahan] comes across as, unless you have leverage, he won’t do what’s right.

“And the Saudi money has finally given us that leverage. I’m not sure I even want to succeed, but just the idea of it is allowing us to get things done with the Tour.

“The Tour likes to pretend it’s a democracy, but it’s really a dictatorship. They divide and conquer.”

McIlroy was today asked about these comments and he didn’t hold back.

“I don’t want to kick someone while he’s down, obviously, but I thought they were naive, selfish, egotistical, ignorant,” McIlroy said.

“A lot of words to describe that interaction he had with Shipnuck. It was just very surprising and disappointing, sad. I’m sure he’s sitting at home sort of rethinking his position and where he goes from here.”

And with all that, the new Sudi-backed golf league looks dead in the water.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *