Dustin Johnson, Phil Mickelson and other PGA Tour members who started in the Saudi-funded golf league on Thursday are no longer eligible for PGA Tour events under penalties shared by Commissioner Jay Monahan shortly after the first tee shot was struck.
It remains to be seen whether these players are ever welcome back.
The ban includes participation in the Presidents Cup, which would involve the South African trio Louis Oosthuizen, Charl Schwartzel and Branden Grace.
The USGA has already said that qualified players can still compete in the US Open next week. The PGA Tour does not run the big ones.
In a note sent to tour members, Monahan said that even if players withdrew from the tour prior to the first LIV Golf Invitational outside London, they would not be allowed to play PGA Tour events as a non-member by obtaining a sponsorship exemption .
Nine players have withdrawn from the PGA Tour, a list that includes Johnson and Sergio Garcia. Mickelson, who gained lifetime membership with his 45 PGA Tour titles, has not.
“These players have made their choice for their own financial reasons,” Monahan wrote. “But they can not claim the same PGA Tour membership benefits, considerations, opportunities and platform as you. The expectation does not respect you, our fans and our partners.”
These are players competing without a conflicting event release from the PGA Tour. Players typically receive three such releases a year, but Monahan refused releases to the LIV Golf Invitational because it is an eight-tournament series that has five events in the United States.
The tour does not allow releases for events in North America.
“We have followed the tournament rules from start to finish to respond to those players who have decided to turn their backs on the PGA Tour by deliberately violating a regulation,” he wrote.
More AP Golf: https://apnews.com/hub/golf and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports