After months of speculation as to whether LIV Golf players would be eligible to compete in next year’s Masters, the issue was finally resolved with confirmation that Augusta National will allow them to play in the first Major of the year.
One man who wouldn’t have needed to think twice about his appearance if it not for his decision to sign for LIV Golf is Bryson DeChambeau. The American met the criteria to qualify thanks to his win in the 2020 US Open, which handed him eligibility for the following five years. However, that was cast into doubt once he signed for the controversial organisation.
With the threat of being barred from appearing now lifted, the 29-year-old has said it is the correct outcome. According to a tweet from the Golf Channel’s Todd Lewis, DeChambeau responded to the news, saying: “As long as you meet the criteria established by the tournament committee, you should be eligible to play. I believe they made the right decision. This Masters will be one of the most exciting Masters in many years”.
“As long as you meet the criteria established by the tournament committee, you should be eligible to play. I believe they made the right decision. This Masters will be one of the most exciting Masters in many years.”-@b_dechambeau on Augusta National allowing LIV golfers to play.December 20, 2022
Explaining the reasoning behind the decision to allow LIV Golf players to compete next year, Augusta National chairman Fred Ridley said in a statement: “Regrettably, recent actions have divided men’s professional golf by diminishing the virtues of the game and the meaningful legacies of those who built it. Although we are disappointed in these developments, our focus is to honor the tradition of bringing together a preeminent field of golfers this coming April. Therefore, as invitations are sent this week, we will invite those eligible under our current criteria to compete in the 2023 Masters Tournament.”
There is no doubt the ongoing issue had been a cause for concern among affected LIV Golf players. For example, talking about the potential for LIV Golf Masters bans in August, two-time champion Bubba Watson said he was “hoping, and praying, that they make the right decisions and past champions and people, we can all start playing.” He also said: “If they tell me that I can’t go, being a past champion, then I don’t want to be there anyway because that’s just – that’s just the wrong way to look at it. It’s the game of…