They say that time heals everything, and the drums of war that have been the soundtrack of the planet golf for almost a year now, when the irruption of the LIV caused an unprecedented schism in this sport, are losing strength. In it PGA Championship from Oak Hill, New York (USA), who raised Brooks Koepka on Sundaythe first enrolled in the Saudi super league to ‘hunt’ a great since its creation, there were no boos for the LIVers, as in the British Open last year, no high-sounding statements from either side, no incidents between players, such as when Patrick Reed and Rory McIlroy squared off on the putting green in Dubai in late 2022.
Koepka, who has never given the impression of caring much about anything other than himself, downplayed the occasion. “I think he will help the circuit, but honestly I am more interested in how he is going to help me,” he assured, already as champion, at a press conference. “It’s a big thing for the LIV, but at the same time I compete here individually. I’m just happy to take this trophy home for the third time, ”he added, refusing to reveal when asked by journalists if he had already received a congratulations from Greg Norman, CEO of the LIV. Interesting were also the reflections (or the absence thereof) in the appearance of Phil Mickelson, perhaps the flattest of his entire career, no trace of the desire to march that he has shown both in the media and on social networks throughout the fight.
The impression is that the fifth major of the Florida player, who seems to have recovered for the cause after going through a long hole fraught with injuries that sank him morally, as his episode in the Netflix series shows full swing contributes to détente, to the normalization of coexistence between circuits. Something that was already felt in Augusta and, before, in the decision of the greats to allow the competition to play.
A melon that reopens this PGA, in fact, is that of the Ryder Cup. Asked about this, neither Zach Johnson nor Luke Donald, captains of the USA and Europe respectively, ruled out taking the LIVers into account for September, and it would be difficult to explain why Koepka, now second in the US ranking, with three editions behind him (six wins, five losses and one draw), was excluded, even more so after this twist that returns him to the elite.
On the North American side, it helps that the control corresponds to the PGA of America, which already announced weeks ago that the outlaws are eligible, and not to the PGA Tourwho is an actor much more influenced and worn by confrontation, and therefore prone to adopting a belligerent stance. On the European side, on the other hand, the handle is distributed among the European Tour (60%), the PGA of Great Britain and Ireland (20%) and the PGA of Europe (20%), which brings together 29 PGAs from the Old Continent. . And the alpha male of the network, the circuit, imposed sanctions in April on the ‘rebels’ who enlisted in the LIV last year, a measure that removes, among other things, the possibility of seeing Sergio García, the best European in the history of the competition, playing a tenth edition at the Marco Simone Golf in Rome.