USA captain Zach Johnson talks LIV Golf players at the 2023 Ryder Cup

USA captain Zach Johnson does not intend to bring in any players who have joined LIV Golf when next year’s Ryder Cup kicks off in Italy.

They won’t be there.

Speaking earlier this week at the John Deere Classic at TPC Deere Run in Silvis, Illinois, where Johnson has seven top-5 finishes, including a victory in 2012, the two-time major winner said that when you connect the dots, those who have bolted the PGA tour of the rival Saudi-backed league will not wear the red, white and blue when the United States takes on Europe from September 29-October 29. 1 at the Marco Simone Golf and Country Club outside of Rome.

“In order to play on the Ryder Cup team, whether you’re a top-6 or a pick, you must earn Ryder Cup points through the PGA of America,” Johnson said. “To earn Ryder Cup points through the PGA of America, you must be a member of the PGA of America. We are members of the PGA of America through the PGA Tour.

“I’ll let you connect the dots from there.”

From now on, that would ban players from last year’s winning American team – Dustin Johnson, Brooks Koepka and Bryson DeChambeau. Patrick Reed and Phil Mickelson would also be absent.

As for Europe, they could do without longtime stalwarts Sergio Garcia, Lee Westwood, Martin Kaymer and Ian Poulter.

“Hopefully I still have the opportunity, as I’m sure (Kaymer and Westwood) as well, to be part of a few other Ryder Cup teams,” Garcia said at Pumpkin Ridge Golf Club outside Portland. , Oregon, is hosting the second event in the LIV Golf Invitational series this week. “But it’s not going to be up to us now. We’ll just cross our fingers. »

And Westwood wondered why there was even a chance he wouldn’t be allowed another Ryder Cup.

“I’ve been playing Ryder Cup golf since 1997, and the criteria was being a member of the European (DP World) Tour. From now on, the criterion for being a member of the European Tour is to compete in four events. Why should they change that now? Westwood said. “I’ve been a member of the PGA Tour and still played four events on the European Tour, and why would the European Tour change its rules so drastically because another Tour doesn’t like it or feels financially threatens ?

“There is just a little too much protection for my taste and not enough transparency. I think as long as you meet the criteria to be a member (of the DP World Tour), you should always have the option of trying to qualify for the Ryder Cup team.

Michael C. Ford