Tiger Woods Optimistic After Meeting with LIV Golf and PGA Tour for Potential Reconciliation

Pinehurst, North Carolina – June 12, 2024: Golf legend Tiger Woods expressed cautious optimism on Tuesday following a significant meeting between the PGA Tour and the Saudi backers of LIV Golf, suggesting a potential deal to reunify the sport might be closer than ever. Speaking ahead of this week’s US Open, Woods, a key figure in the ongoing negotiations, attended the pivotal meeting in New York City last Friday. This marked the first face-to-face discussions between the two sides since March.

“It was productive. And is there light at the end of the tunnel? I think we’re closer to that point than we were pre-meeting,” Woods remarked from Pinehurst Resort. “We discussed a lot of different endings and how we get there. I think that both sides walked away from the meeting feeling very positive.”

Woods, a 15-time major champion, is actively involved in a subcommittee that negotiates directly with the Saudi Public Investment Fund (PIF). The discussions aim to mend the rift between the PGA Tour and LIV Golf, a breakaway circuit that has caused significant division in the golf world.

The framework for a possible reconciliation was first laid out in June 2023 when the PGA Tour, PIF, and the Europe-based DP World Tour agreed to form a unified commercial entity called PGA Tour Enterprises. Although the initial agreement expired at the end of 2023, recent talks have focused on solidifying a long-term deal, despite numerous hurdles remaining.

Adding to the complexity of the negotiations, the PGA Tour has secured a substantial $3 billion investment into PGA Tour Enterprises from a consortium of US sports team owners, which includes provisions for co-investment by the PIF.

“Both sides were looking at different ways to get to the end game,” Woods said. “I think that both sides shared a deep passion for how we need to get there. And yes, there are going to be differences of opinion, but we all want the same thing.”

Returning to competitive play this week for the first time since missing the cut at the PGA Championship, Woods has focused on enhancing his fitness and refining his short game. The three-time US Open champion is confident in his physical readiness to tackle the rigorous demands of the tournament, known for its challenging course setup.

“I feel like I have the strength to be able to do it. It’s just a matter of doing it,” said Woods. He will compete in the initial rounds alongside 2022 US Open champion Matt Fitzpatrick and former runner-up Will Zalatoris.

Woods acknowledged the mental toughness required for the US Open, noting, “This golf course is going to test every single aspect of your game, especially mentally, and just the mental discipline that it takes to play this particular golf course, it’s going to take a lot.”

As Woods prepares for the formidable challenge of the US Open, his involvement in the pivotal negotiations highlights his commitment to not only his own game but also the future of professional golf.

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