Cameron Smith nominated for major PGA Tour award despite LIV’s defection

The good news is that Cameron Smith’s astonishing 2022, which included his major breakthrough at the British Open as one of three wins and a climb to world No. 2, has been recognized by the PGA Tour.

The bad news is that the award for which Smith was nominated, the PGA Tour Player of the Year, is voted for by PGA Tour players, many of whom have expressed significant opposition to the LIV Golf series, in which the Queenslander is now firmly anchored.

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Smith’s nomination, along with FedEx Cup champion Rory McIlroy and world No. 1 Scottie Scheffler, came just a day after raking in just under $1.5 million for fourth place at his event. opening LIV in Boston.

It also comes after Smith and all of LIV’s latest converts, including fellow Australian Marc Leishman, were suspended from the PGA Tour.

The Player of the Year winner is chosen by a vote of tour members who have appeared in at least 15 FedEx Cup events, including McIlroy, arguably the most outspoken player against LIV.

McIlroy, who has already won the award three times, also won the Tour Championship in 2022. Despite not winning a major, McIlroy finished in the top eight of four, finishing second at the Masters and third at the Open.

Scheffler, tied for second behind McIlroy in that event, won the Masters and finished second at the US Open. He also picked up three more victories on his rise to world No. 1.

Voting for the prize closes at the end of this week, with the winner to be announced at a later date.

Michael C. Ford