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Volume 7 No. 149
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World Golf Group Proposes Global Tour With $20M Purses

A new global golf circuit is reportedly "being planned," in what would be the "biggest upheaval in the professional game in decades," according to Andrew Both of REUTERS. To be named the World Golf Series, the circuit proposed by the British-based World Golf Group "has been in the planning stages for more than a year." The group hopes to stage 15-20 yearly tournaments around the world, each offering a purse of close to $20M, according to sources familiar with the plans. Such a figure "would dwarf the prize money currently on offer on the game's richest circuit," the PGA Tour, whose biggest purse this season is $11M. Several "blue-chip sponsors are believed to be on board for the World Golf Series if top players can be signed." A leading player said that he and other top professionals are "aware of the proposal." The player, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said, "Why would you not be interested -- 18 tournaments for $20 million?" But the new tour faces "major hurdles, not least that it is likely to meet staunch opposition from the PGA Tour, which will hardly be pleased by the prospect of a rival circuit siphoning off its best and most marketable talent." The new tour is "also unlikely to be sanctioned for world ranking points, which could on its own make it a non-starter" (REUTERS, 5/21).