European Tour chief Keith Pelley lauds ‘new era for global golf’ after announcing historic partnership with PGA Tour which paves the way for a potential World Tour
- European and PGA Tours announced a new ‘strategic partnership’ on Friday
- The move looks to combat the upstart Saudi-backed Premier Golf League
- European Tour chief Keith Pelley admitted they also got an offer from the PGL
- The PGA Tour has bought a financial stake in the European Tour’s production arm
European Tour chief executive Keith Pelley hailed a ‘new era for global golf’ after announcing a partnership with the US-based PGA Tour that surely paves the way for a World Tour.
The alliance has been years in the making but came together in the space of 72 hours as both tours look to kill off the upstart Saudi-backed Premier Golf League.
The PGL have promised untold millions to the top players and were rumoured to be ready to make a big announcement next month regarding a circuit for the elite they hoped would be up and running by 2023.
The PGA and European Tour announced that they had formed a new ‘strategic partnership’
Keith Pelley (right) admitted the European Tour had received a ‘compelling offer’ from the PGL
Pelley admitted the tour had received a ‘compelling offer’ from the PGL but opted to link arms instead with the organisation once considered its deadly rival. As Pelley conceded: ‘This is a momentous day where the PGA Tour has gone from being a competitor to a partner.’
There seems little doubt as to who will be the senior partner. The PGA Tour has bought a financial stake in the European Tour’s production arm and its chief executive Jay Monahan will have a seat on the European Tour board.
‘Jay is a remarkable visionary and I couldn’t be more excited at the arrangement,’ said Pelley.
The European Tour chief said that the partnership had produced a ‘new era’ for global golf
The Canadian was keen to shoot down social media suggestions this agreement will lead to a PGA Tour takeover. ‘The only way that would happen would be if our tour was in financial difficulty and that is not the case,’ said Pelley.
‘We’re in robust financial health and, in fact, our balance sheet is the strongest it has ever been.’
lPaul Casey has defended his decision to enter next year’s Saudi International, after previously saying he would be a ‘hypocrite’ to play in the event.
Casey said: ‘This is not a decision I’ve taken lightly. I wasn’t comfortable going in the past but I believe sport has the power to affect change. I’ve listened to the Saudis’ commitment to this and their vision for the future.’
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