Nobody from the LIV Golf contingent at the Masters this year was able to win the Green Jacket, but a few members of the contentious Saudi-sponsored tour made a lasting impression on the leaderboard on Sunday at Augusta National.
Two of LIV’s biggest names, Brooks Koepka and Phil Mickelson, who have each won three Masters titles, tied for second place, finishing four shots behind Spaniard Jon Rahm.
The 2018 Masters champion Patrick Reed was one more shot back in a tie for fourth. Joaquin Niemann, the next-best player from LIV Golf, finished in a tie for sixteenth place.
18 players from the lucrative circuit, whose 54-hole tournaments with no cuts have sparked discussion about their competitiveness, teed it up in the year’s first major at this year’s Masters, the first since LIV Golf launched last June.
Nobody, according to Koepka, should have been shocked to see that he and his LIV Golf teammates could compete at Augusta National, one of the biggest venues in the sport.
“We remain the same as before. In other words, I’m confident that I can compete if I’m healthy. I don’t believe any of the guys who participated in this event did “said Koepka.
He continued, “When Phil plays well, we know he’s going to compete.” “P-Reed, the exact same. I believe that claim that we can no longer compete and are finished has simply been made up by the media.”
Koepka, who had a two-shot lead going into the final round and had won all three of his previous majors when he had at least a share of the 54-hole lead, was in the best position to give LIV Golf the victory.
However, Koepka’s wheels fell off after his lead vanished after just four holes, and he was never able to pose a threat again as he finished with a three-over-par 75.
Despite starting the final round 10 shots behind Koepka, Mickelson shot the day’s lowest score of seven under par, moving into contention.
Despite the fact that it was too little, too late for Mickelson, the six-time major champion claimed that he and the other members of LIV Golf weren’t trying to make a statement to the other competitors.
Mickelson added, “I wouldn’t look at it that way. “I’m grateful that we can play in the majors and that we are allowed to be here. The fact that the finest players in the world were present at this tournament and that all pettiness was abandoned struck me as fascinating.”
Last December, Augusta National made it possible for eligible LIV Golf players to participate in the first major of the year.
Players from LIV Golf have fallen down the list while they wait for a decision on their eligibility while competing on the Saudi-sponsored circuit. If a player is not exempt, their position in the global rankings is the key to their ability to enter the majors.
Niemann was really happy with his performance at the Masters, which earned him some ranking points.
Hopefully, they’ll come up with a solution before allowing all the best players in the majors to compete against one another. “I believe that this week was crucial, just in case. I mean, ideally score some points.”