LIV Tour

LIV Golf: Martin Kaymer and Dustin Johnson in the field for first event

Speculation has been rife for a long time, but now the LIV Golf Invitational Series has announced the field for next week’s event at London’s Centurion Club. 42 of 48 players have already been selected for the three-round tournament, with a few spots still open. It was announced a few weeks ago that Martin Kaymer also wants to play in the team event, which is endowed with 25 million dollars. Besides the German Major winner, Bernd Wiesberger will also take part in the rival event to the PGA and DP World Tour. Surprisingly, Dustin Johnson has also changed his mind and is now the main mover of the event in the UK’s capital.

“Too compelling to pass up”

“Dustin has been contemplating the opportunity off-and-on for the past couple of years,” Johnson’s manager, David Winkle with Hambric Sports, said in a statement (Golf Channel). It was only in February that Dustin Johnson became one of many stars to declare his allegiance to the PGA Tour via a statement. “Ultimately, he decided it was in his and his family’s best interest to pursue it. Dustin has never had any issue with the PGA Tour and is grateful for all it has given him, but in the end, felt this was too compelling to pass up.” So the new competition series, financed by Saudi Arabian money, has succeeded after all in landing a real top-class player in the form of the world number 13 and two-time major winner.

Martin Kaymer in the mix, question about Mickelson

Moreover, the major winners and former world number one announced by Greg Norman can be found in the field of participants. As expected, Martin Kaymer will tee off at the Centurion Club alongside Johnson. In addition, there are names like Lee Westwood, Sergio Garcia, Louis Oosthuizen and Ian Poulter. Austrian Bernd Wiesberger will also take part in the opening event of the LIV Golf Invitational Series, as will other players from the DP World Tour, and will compete for the winner’s cheque of four million dollars (!).

Phil Mickelson, who was also linked to the new Saudi league, discarded himself with unspeakable statements with the PGA Tour and subsequently took time off, is incidentally not on the list published on Tuesday night. The six-time major winner, who also cancelled his title defence at the 2022 PGA Championship, is therefore unlikely to end his golfing break – as of now. However, only 42 of 48 starters have been announced. Five places are still to be left open for qualifiers from the Asian Tour, one place would then still be free. Jason Kokrak, who had openly flirted with the change, is also missing from the list.

LIV Golf Invitational Series criticised

The tournament series led by Greg Norman has been criticised because it is fed with money from the Public Investment Fund, which is largely in Saudi Arabian hands. The government of the state is accused of numerous human rights violations, which are supposed to be whitewashed with so-called “sports washing”. In the eight-tournament series, 48 players in twelve teams will compete against each other. Since there is no cut, even the last player will still receive a guaranteed fat cash prize. PGA Tour and DP World Tour had reacted to the requests of their players to be allowed to participate in the new competitive tour with tough rejections. It remains to be seen what the consequences will be for participation in the events of the LIV Golf Invitational Series.

The field of participants for the opening event

Oliver Bekker
Richard Bland
Laurie Canter
Ratchanon Chantananuwat (Amateur)
Hennie Du Plessis
Oliver Fisher
Sergio Garcia
Talor Gooch
Branden Grace
Justin Harding
Sam Horsfield
Dustin Johnson
Matt Jones
Sadom Kaewkanjana
Martin Kaymer
Phachara Khongwatmai
Sihwan Kim
Ryosuke Kinoshita
Chase Koepka
Jinichiro Kozuma
Pablo Larrazabal
Graeme McDowell
Jediah Morgan
Kevin Na
Shaun Norris
Andy Ogletree
Louis Oosthuizen
Wade Ormsby
Adrian Otaegui
Turk Pettit
James Piot (Amateur)
Ian Poulter
David Puig (Amateur)
JC Ritchie
Charl Schwartzel
Hudson Swafford
Hideto Tanihara
Peter Uihlein
Scott Vincent
Lee Westwood
Bernd Wiesberger
Blake Windred

European Tour

2022 BMW International Open: Two million euros in prize money, plus the new BMW i7

A high-class field, led by Major winners Martin Kaymer, Sergio García and Louis Oosthuizen, has been confirmed for the BMW International Open (22nd to 26th June 2022, Golfclub München Eichenried). This year’s prize purse for the most iconic professional golf event in Germany, which BMW is staging for the 33rd time, stands at two million euros overall, making the BMW International Open the most lucrative German golf tournament.

Fully-electric luxury saloon at hole 17

As well as Kaymer, García and Oosthuizen, fans can also look forward to seeing Ryder Cup players Bernd Wiesberger (AUT) and Rafa Cabrera Bello (ESP), reigning “DP World Tour Rookie of the Year” Matti Schmid (GER), and two more top German players, in Max Kieffer and Marcel Siem.

In 2022, the pros will have the opportunity to win an extraordinary Hole-in-One Car with an ace on the 17th hole (par 3). Even before it makes its world premiere in a few weeks’ time, the new BMW i7 has been confirmed as the prize. The world’s first fully-electric luxury saloon, and with a range of over 600 kilometres, the BMW i7 is bringing innovative driving pleasure to the streets.

Visitors can expect a first class event at the BMW International Open

“Everyone at BMW is excited that it looks likely that we will be able to welcome visitors and golf fans without any restrictions, as well as a fantastic field of players,” says Zana Koval, Head of Brand Experience BMW Deutschland. “As the organiser, BMW will raise the premium visitor experience to a new level. This is reflected in such a high-class and innovative Hole-in-One Car as the BMW i7.”

The great importance of sustainability is also shown by the shuttle fleet for the 2022 BMW International Open, which this year consists entirely of electrified vehicles – charged using green electricity, of course.

Day tickets, season tickets and VIP tickets for the Fairway Club are available from the online ticket shop ( Admission to the Pro-Am, on Wednesday 22nd June, is free of charge. However, visitors must order a free and personalised admission ticket in the ticket shop. Those interested can also find information on discounts in the ticket shop. Tickets can be returned up to three days prior to the event – 14 days in the case of Fairway Club tickets – and the ticket price will be reimbursed.

(Text: BMW Group)

Highlights Tours

European Tour: Kaymer hopeful of comeback win in Austria

Martin Kaymer has arrived at this week’s Austrian Golf Open, confident of clinching a result which can kick-start his 2021 campaign and help him back on the path to Ryder Cup and Major glory.

The two-time Major winner drove from his home in Germany to Diamond Country Club, in Atzenbrugg near Vienna, with his eyes on the prize as he targets a route back to the kind of form which made him a World Number One and 11-time European Tour winner.

Kaymer’s form has improved event-by-event this year and he enters this week following a top 20 finish in his last European Tour appearance at the Saudi International powered by SoftBank Investments Advisors.

Home hope Matthias Schwab is regarded as one of the favourites this week, especially after a strong weekend in his most recent appearance at the Kenya Savannah Classic supported by Absa, where he carded 66-65 in the final two days to finish in a share of seventh place.

Another player who finished in a share of seventh position in the most recent event in Kenya is Joost Luiten, a man who has enjoyed an enviable record in this event – in his seven appearances he has recorded one win, two top threes, two further top tens and two further top 20s.

Martin Kaymer says he’s happy to be in Austria

“I like to come to Austria. It’s a nice country with good food, good golf courses. This week it’s a great golf course, it’s just the weather; nobody can influence it. It’ll be a good week and there will still be one winner on Sunday.

“I played 18 holes yesterday, which was an interesting one because it was almost snowing. It was very difficult to see how the golf course will play once the first day comes. Maybe the weather will improve a little bit, but I think it will be a battle.

“It’s difficult to see the ball flying with the cold. But it’s a week that I always prefer, it’s a country I like to come to, it’s close to my home country – I could drive here this week. There’s a lot of comfort for me.

“The top 50 in the world is huge, you can get into all of the Majors and the WGC events and once you can do that you can play yourself into events that I haven’t played in a couple of years, and I still haven’t given up on The Ryder Cup.

“The Ryder Cup is huge and it was a real pain not to be part of the team in France. I know I’m quite far away right now but I feel like I’m doing a lot of things right at the moment to have a good summer.

“If I could get a couple of big results, that would make a big difference for me. Knowing that I’m very close – or I feel like I’m close – but you still need the results. No one cares how you feel, as long as you don’t put the right results on the scorecard and that’s something I’m longing for.”

Matthias Schwab is finally back on home turf

“It’s always nice to have a home Open. I’ve played here quite a lot of times so I almost feel like I’m at home, although I live three hours from here. I think the first time was 11 years ago as an amateur and I’ve come back five, six, seven times, I’m not sure.

“I know the course, I know the people that work here, I know the head of the club and they’re all very friendly and I’d say they’re all fans of me, so I like to come back here and I hope to have a good week. 

“The home support is obviously not that big this year with no spectators but the local knowledge I think is nice to have, it is a bonus. Looking back, say in Kenya, I didn’t really know the course and I’m still quite new to the Tour, I consider myself quite new so a lot of time I go to places for the first time and I have to learn the course, the layout, the strategy and all that stuff, but here I don’t have to do that anymore.

“I’ve played the course enough times and I know the changes from the last year or two, I’d say. I feel good about the course; I know where to go and where not to go. Obviously it will play a little bit different in the conditions we face this year, but I think it’s definitely a bonus week.”

Joost Luiten is coming in with confidence

“I’m feeling good, the game is good. I had two weeks off, I’ve been practicing at home. I’m feeling ready to go this week. I’m using the practice days to get used to the conditions, it’s a bit nippy today!

“For some reason I like this course, it just suits my eye. You’ve got to hit the ball well, you’ve got to hit the greens so if I can play my game I know I can play well on this golf course and I know I can win on this golf course.

“It always helps when you’ve won in the past, you always go to that venue with a little bit more confidence and hopefully I can bring out on to the golf course this week.

“My game is always about consistency, hitting fairways and hitting greens and if I can putt well then I should be up there on Sunday which happened a couple of times. I couldn’t finish it last year but I think I’m very consistent with the ball-striking and if that’s there every week you’re never going to be far off scorewise.”

Text: European Tour