Cameron Smith cops brutal act from PGA Tour after move to LIV Golf

·Sports Reporter
·4-min read
Cameron Smith looks to the crowd during the LIV Golf event in Boston.
Cameron Smith has been on the recieving end of a couple of petty acts from the PGA Tour after his move to the rival LIV series. (Photo by Patrick Smith/LIV Golf via Getty Images)

The full ramifications of Australian golfer Cameron Smith's decision to join the LIV series are continuing to come to light, with the PGA Tour making a few somewhat personal moves against the British Open champ.

The PGA Tour is locked in a bitter war with the LIV series, which is fronted by Greg Norman and backed by billions of dollars from the Saudi Arabia's lucrative Public Investment Fund.

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Several of golf's biggest names, including Smith and the likes of Phil Mickelson and Bryson Dechambeau, have joined the LIV series in a big blow to the PGA Tour.

Since then, the PGA has made moves to ban players who join the rival series from their ranks, resulting in an ongoing anti-trust lawsuit before the courts in the US.

Smith won the Players Championship earlier this year, one of the most coveted PGA titles and one which comes with a variety of perks.

Among those is a personal carpark at the TPC Sawgrass clubhouse, as well as ongoing playing privileges at the Ponte Vedra Beach course.

However in Smith's case, both of those perks have since been revoked in a somewhat petty move by the PGA since he signed his massive A$145 million contract.

The personalised sign marking Smith's spot has reportedly been removed and replaced with a generic one reading 'Tour players only'.

“If they go to LIV they don’t have any of their [PGA] Tour privileges at TPC properties,” TPC Sawgrass general manager Derek Sprague said.

In addition to the carpark and playing privileges being revoked, a replica set of clubs from Smith's TPC championship victory displayed in the TPC Sawgrass pro shop have also been removed, as have photos and posters commemorating Smith's win.

Smith's LIV debut came when the series visited Boston last week, with the 29-year-old finishing tied for fourth, as well as finishing tied for sixth in the teams competition.

Cameron Smith tees off at his debut LIV Golf event in Boston.
Cameron Smith tied for fourth in his debut for LIV Golf at their event in Boston. (Photo by Chris Trotman/LIV Golf via Getty Images)

Cameron Smith nominated for PGA award after LIV Golf signing

A few days after teeing up for the first time in the LIV Series, Smith has been named one of three Player of the Year nominees for the PGA Tour.

This is not surprising given Smith had a stellar year winning the British Open and The Players Championship and rising to world No.2.

However, LIV's arrival has split golf with legal cases aplenty and growing personal animosity between the two camps. In the circumstances Smith winning the Jack Nicklaus Award would be embarrassing for the PGA Tour, to put it mildly.

After all Smith, like the other LIV golfers, has been suspended from the PGA Tour. And Nicklaus has said he declined a fortune to front it - though the man who did, Australia's Greg Norman, subsequently called Nicklaus 'a hypocrite' alleging he had originally backed the concept.

A Smith coronation does not, though, seem likely, as the winner is chosen by a vote of tour members who played in at least 15 FedEx Cup events during the season.

It is probable they will instead choose either Rory McIlroy or Scottie Scheffler.

McIlroy, who has been an outspoken advocate for the PGA Tour, and against LIV Golf, has already won the award three times.

He not won a major this year but finished in the top eight in all four, coming second at the Masters and third at the Open. He also won last month's Tour Championship.

Scheffler, who tied for second behind McIlroy in that event, won the Masters and came second at the US Open, but missed the cut at the PGA.

The nominees for the PGA Tour Rookie of the Year — the Arnold Palmer Award — are Tom Kim, Sahith Theegala and Cameron Young.

with AAP

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