Major championships should change their qualification rules to open the door for more LIV players according to 2020 US Open champ Bryson DeChambeau, who called the rejection for world rankings points “sad”.
On Wednesday it was confirmed the LIV request to gain official world ranking points for their 54-hole, no-cut, team-based events had been officially rejected, closing the door on the majors for the majority of players on the Saudi-backed tour.
Some, including Australian Cameron Smith and DeChambeau, have exemptions that secure their places in the Masters, British Open and US Open and PGA for the immediate future courtesy of their recent major wins.
But the majority of LIV’s players, who joined the breakaway tour for guaranteed money every tournament and big sign-on bonuses, have slipped down the world rankings over the past two years and out of major qualification.
There are only two players, Smith and Brooks Koepka, inside the top 50 and only five of the 48 players with LIV in the top 100.
Ahead of the second last LIV event of the season in Jeddah, where Smith and DeChambeau are both in the running to secure the $28m bonus for winning the season-long individual title, the American said he would like golf officials to find “another way” to integrate LIV players into majors.
“I think at this point in time, now that they’re not allowing it, we would love to find another way to be integrated into the major championship system since I think we have some of the best players in the world,” he said.
“Top 12 on the list, the money list, at the end of the year or the points list at the end of the year, would be, I think, obvious for the major championships to host the best players in the world at those four events each year.
“It‘s honestly sad that they’ve done that.”
DeChambeau was once ranked as high as No.4 in the world and is now No. 132 even after tying for fourth at the PGA Championship and 20th at the US Open.
He said the players who crossed to LIV knew what they signed up for but, as a vocal critic of the current rankings system, was adamant LIV had changed the game for the better.
“People are going to say that it’s sad that we came over here,” DeChambeau said.
“But it’s like, look, this is an amazing opportunity for every one of us. I think we’ve told that narrative quite a bit, and we want to continue to change and grow the game in places like Saudi Arabia, like Singapore, like Australia, numerous places we’ve all been throughout this year, and we’re going to continue to do so over the course of time.”
LEADING LIV PLAYERS WORLD RANKINGS
15 – Cameron Smith
18 – Brooks Koepka
62 – Patrick Reed
64 – Joaquin Niemann
92 – Abraham Ancer
110 – Phil Mickelson
121- Dustin Johnson
132 – Bryson DeChambeau