Sport Golf

Thursday 23 November 2017

Rory McIlroy: PGA Tour should buy European Tour – it is time to create a World Tour

Rory McIlroy
Rory McIlroy

James Corrigan

Rory McIlroy might be absent here this week but he caused a stir on the first day of the Tour Championship by declaring that the PGA Tour should buy the European Tour and so swallow up his home circuit.

The Ulsterman missed out on the chance of defending the FedEx Cup when failing to finished in the top-30 standings. But McIlroy is playing at next week’s British Masters in Newcastle and the reaction from the European Tour chief executive, Keith Pelley, might be interesting.

“The World Tour – it’s going to happen one day, and I think it has to,” McIlroy told the No Laying Up podcast. “To have all these tours competing against each other, and having to change dates, it’s counter-productive. I think everyone has to come together.

“The easy thing would be for the PGA Tour to buy the European Tour, and take it from there. They could still run the European events, and we’ll have say 12 big events a year, outside the majors, a bit like they do in tennis. I don’t see any other way. I know discussions have taken place, so maybe one day.”

It is understood the European Tour rejected an approach from the PGA Tour in 2013. And since then Pelley has made it clear he wants to establish “a viable alternative” to the US for the young Europeans, with the Rolex Series – an eight-strong series of $7 million events – aiming to make the circuit more attractive. However, the power of the PGA Tour cannot be doubted and this domination is certainly showing a parallel inside the ropes at this event.

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