PGA Tour and LIV Golf ‘dismiss all legal claims against one another’ after shock merger

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PGA Tour and LIV Golf ‘dismiss all legal claims against one another’ after shock merger – but the deal will still be investigated by the US Justice Department

The PGA Tour and Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund have moved to voluntarily dismiss the outstanding legal claims hurled at one another in federal antitrust lawsuit, according to reports. 

Legal claims against the PIF’s governor Yasir Al-Rumayyan have also been dismissed, as the two companies look to move on after their shock merger on June 6. 

The PIF’s LIV Golf circuit’s new alliance with the PGA and DP World Tour will see the companies form a new, as-yet unnamed entity, in what PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan claimed would change the game of golf for the better. 

‘There’s been a lot of tension in our sport over the last couple years,’ Monahan told CNBC in the wake of the surprise deal. ‘What we’re talking about today is coming together to unify the game of golf, and to do so under one umbrella.

‘We’ve recognized that together, we can have a far greater impact on this game than we can working apart. 

Claims against PIF governor Yasir Al-Rumayyan were dismissed by the PGA and vice versa

Claims against PIF governor Yasir Al-Rumayyan were dismissed by the PGA and vice versa

PGA commissioner Jay Monahan claimed that the deal between the two entities had made the game of golf 'better'

PGA commissioner Jay Monahan claimed that the deal between the two entities had made the game of golf ‘better’

‘The game of golf is better for what we’ve done here today.’

As per ESPN, a stipulation was filed on Friday in the US District Court for the Northern District in San Jose, with the sides agreeing the LIV Golf and the PIF would voluntarily dismiss with prejudice its claims against the tour, and vice versa, against LIV, PIF, and Al-Rumayyan. 

As the claims are dismissed with prejudice, neither LIV Golf’s antitrust claims, nor the tour’s counterclaims can ever be refiled. 

The merger represents an enormous win for LIV Golf, whose players were shunned for accepting enormous paydays by a number of their colleagues, and received hefty sanctions for competing in LIV competitions. 

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Lee Westwood, Sergio Garcia, and Ian Poulter all resigned from the DP World Tour over their refusal to pay the fines, which in some cases rose to over £800,000. 

Players who stayed loyal to the tour may yet be rewarded by the new entity, with the PIF believed to be mulling over the idea of compensating those such as Rory McIlroy resisted temptation to join LIV. 

McIlroy was an outspoken critic of the concept, and many others inside and outside the game have been sceptical that the Kingdom’s move into the game may constitute ‘sportswashing’ of Saudi Arabia’s human rights record. 

The merger may not have called time on all potential legal challenges, however, after it was reported on Thursday that the US Justice Department plans to review the deal to determine if the move violates antitrust law.  

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PGA Tour and LIV Golf ‘dismiss all legal claims against one another’ after shock merger – but the deal will still be investigated by the US Justice Department 

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