TORONTO — DP World Tour CEO Keith Pelley on Wednesday told his golfers that those who resigned their memberships to join the LIV Golf League probably won’t be reinstated this season, making them ineligible to compete in the Ryder Cup later this year.
Nine DP World Tour members resigned after being punished for competing in LIV Golf events, including Ryder Cup veterans Lee Westwood, Ian Poulter, Sergio Garcia, Paul Casey and Henrik Stenson, who was stripped of his captaincy of the European team after signing to play for LIV Golf in July.
The Ryder Cup is scheduled for Sept. 29-Oct. 1 at Marco Simone Golf and Country Club outside Rome.
On Tuesday, the DP World Tour formed an alliance with the PGA Tour and Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund, which is funding LIV Golf. In announcing the agreement, the tours said they would work to establish a “fair and objective” process for players seeking reinstatement, but that won’t begin until after the 2023 season.
“There have been several suggestions that with the joint commitment to end further litigation between the parties, this also means our sanctions against players who broke our Regulations will be waived,” Pelley wrote in a memo to players, a copy of which was obtained by ESPN on Wednesday. “That is not the case. The suspensions and fines previously imposed remain effective.”
Pelley wrote that the players who resigned their memberships and wanted to seek reinstatement had to notify the DP World Tour by May 1. None of the nine players did, according to Pelley.
“The ruling in that arbitration court was upheld [in April] that the European Tour can uphold the rules and regulations and sanction people for leaving the tour, for harming the tour,” Rory McIlroy said Wednesday. “And again, I think it’s a moot point, because all those guys have resigned their membership. If you’re not a member of the European Tour you can’t play the Ryder Cup, so to me it’s a moot point.”
Players competing for Europe in the Ryder Cup have to be from European countries and be active members of the DP World Tour.
“They would have to ask for reinstatement, and there would have to be proof of an exceptional circumstance to allow it,” Pelley said. “It would be difficult and highly unlike that that would happen.”
Garcia, who is Europe’s highest career points scorer in the Ryder Cup, said he resigned after European captain Luke Donald told him he “had no chance” of making the team.
“It’s a shame that there were some resignations,” Donald said at last month’s PGA Championship. “A lot of these guys have built their legacy around DP World Tour members and their participation and everything with the Ryder Cup. But ultimately that was their decision, and unfortunately they’re off the table now for selection purposes for myself.”