Stars commit to Saudi International despite potential PGA TOUR fine
Several star PGA TOUR players have committed to the 2022 Saudi International, according to Golf.com's Dylan Dethier, despite a potential fine for members who opt to participate.
The event released a list of commitments Monday that includes notable names Abraham Ancer, Paul Casey, Bryson DeChambeau, Sergio Garcia, Tommy Fleetwood, Tyrrell Hatton, Phil Mickelson, Louis Oosthuizen, Xander Schauffele, Adam Scott, and defending champion Dustin Johnson.
Players must obtain a release to compete in the Saudi International, since it is not a sanctioned PGA TOUR or European Tour event. According to Golfweek/USA Today's Eamon Lynch, the PGA TOUR has yet to grant any releases for the 2022 event. Golfers who compete without a waiver will likely be fined.
The amount of the fine is unclear. Players earn anywhere from $300,000 to $3 million for an appearance at the Saudi International, a caddie told Golf Digest in 2020, without accounting for potential sponsorship opportunities.
The PGA TOUR faces a battle against deep-pocketed Saudi investors who are keen to lure the game's top stars to an alternative league. PGA TOUR commissioner Jay Monahan hasn't commented on whether he'll grant waivers.
The Saudi International is now sanctioned by the Asian Tour and will be held at Royal Greens Golf and Country Club in King Abdullah Economic City, Saudi Arabia, from Feb. 3-6. That's the same week the PGA TOUR heads to Pebble Beach for its annual pro-am event.
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