LIV Golf insurgent Thomas Pieters has claimed that ‘lonely’ life on the PGA Tour mixed with monetary incentives led to him defecting to the Saudi-funded circuit.
The Belgian was the Saudi-backed sequence’ large identify signing forward of its second season in an enormous blow to Group Europe’s Ryder Cup hopes.
The 31-year-old joined Bubba Watson’s staff, the RangeGoats, and has performed the opening two occasions of the season in Mexico and Tucson, Oklahoma.
Regardless of all of the controversy surrounding his and his fellow LIV Golf rebels’ defections, Pieters has claimed it isn’t an enormous deal.
‘Clearly there’s lots of discuss, however on the finish of the day, it is a private opinion, and it is simply golf, it is not life and dying,’ stated Pieters, on Barstool’s Fore Play podcast.
LIV Golf insurgent Thomas Pieters has branded the PGA Tour as ‘lonely’ after his defection
He famous he referred to as DP World Tour chief government Keith Pelley to tell him of his alternative, earlier than including: ‘I made the choice, and I transfer on.’
Whereas some LIV defectors have tried to scrape collectively completely different causes apart from cash for leaping ship, Pieters was at the very least sincere concerning the insurgent sequence’ monetary motivation.
Nonetheless, he additionally claimed that he discovered the PGA Tour too lonely, claiming it was ‘unhappy’ that gamers did not have a life after occasions.
‘As a child you clearly dream about enjoying on the PGA Tour, successful golf tournaments. I performed a 12 months on the PGA Tour. I didn’t prefer it,’ he stated. ‘I obtained very homesick, very lonely, so for me that was type of like tick the field, I attempted it over there, wasn’t my factor after which LIV got here round proper on the proper time.
‘Everyone who was enjoying on it final 12 months that I talked to stated it was very thrilling, new and that was one thing that actually spoke to me. You may’t lie about it financially, it is superb, and it was one thing as a household, father of two daughters, as properly with my girlfriend, it is superior to have such good schedule, as properly.
‘Final week (RangeGoat teammates Harold Varner III and Talor Gooch), we went out to dinner a pair nights, for me that is regular,’ he stated. ‘It is humorous as a result of Harold stated, “man we by no means did this on the PGA Tour,” and I discover that slightly bit unhappy.’
LIV rebels have confronted lots of questions and scrutiny over becoming a member of the sequence, which is backed by Saudi Arabia’s PIF, and sportswashing.
However Pieters claimed he was solely involved with enjoying golf and appeared to hit again at these vital of the upstart.
The Belgian was the Saudi-backed sequence’ large identify signing forward of its second season
Yasir Al-Rumayyan (R) is the present governor of the PIF and Greg Norman (L) is LIV Golf’s CEO
‘I do know my cash comes from an American-based firm,’ stated Pieters, referencing LIV Golf Investments, the place PIF is almost all shareholder. Yasir Al-Rumayyan is the present governor of the PIF, and serves instantly underneath Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who has managed the fund since 2015.
‘I believe the PIF is in about 150 boards if I am not incorrect, so something you contact every day is funded by Saudi cash, so I believe it is a bit hypocritical, among the issues which might be being stated,’ Pieters continued.
‘Clearly the issues which have occurred, they’re horrible. I am right here to play golf. It is not likely one thing I wish to go into. I knew that query was going to be requested, however I do not actually have a solution for that.’
Liv’s subsequent occasion can be held in Orlando from March 31 – April 2, the weeks earlier than golf’s first main of the 12 months, The Masters.