Report: New global golf tour would feature $20 million purses

May 23, 2018

Planning for a new global golf series that would disrupt the traditional power structure of golf’s tours is underway, according to a report from Reuters. The “World Golf Series” would consist of 15 to 20 tournaments staged across the world, each with a purse of $20 million, according to the report.

By comparison, the Players Championship has the largest purse on the PGA Tour at $11 million, while last year’s U.S. Open set a record by paying out $12 million.

The report stated that several large sponsors would be on board, contingent on signing the world’s top players.

The British-based World Golf Group has proposed the series but was keeping details close to the vest. “It would not be appropriate to make a comment at this time,” Chief Commercial Officer Richard Marsh told Reuters in an email.

Reuters also quoted a “leading player” who said that many top pros are intrigued by the proposal — and the money associated with it.

There are a number of complications associated with starting a tour. Players depend on world ranking points to gain eligibility to major championships and earn contract incentives, and agent Chubby Chandler told Reuters he suspects the series would “never” get sanctioned. Chandler added that he believes the series would need six of the world’s top 10 players to stand a chance of succeeding.

In the 1990s, Greg Norman proposed a similar tour; the PGA Tour ultimately threatened to remove the memberships of any players who signed up for the new event. The Tour would likely push back again this time, too, rather than face the possibility of losing top players to a rival series.