London Event Tees off with Golf Stars Mickelson and Johnson Leading the LIV Field

LIV Golf Invitational Series Kicks Off with Notable Players

The highly anticipated LIV Golf Invitational Series is set to begin this week at the Centurion Club near London, featuring a star-studded lineup of 48 players. Among them are some big names in the golfing world who have chosen to participate in this groundbreaking event, despite its controversial association with the Saudi government. Major champions Phil Mickelson and Dustin Johnson are headlining the tournament, drawing attention from fans and critics alike.

Challenges of Attracting Top Players

In its quest to bring in top players, LIV Golf has faced difficulties due to its Saudi-backed nature, which has led to concerns and potential sanctions from the PGA Tour. However, despite these challenges, the inaugural event has managed to attract a significant number of notable competitors, including 13 PGA Tour players who have registered to participate.

Kevin Na and Dustin Johnson’s Resignation from the PGA Tour

A noteworthy development leading up to the tournament was the resignation of Kevin Na from the PGA Tour. Currently ranked 33rd in the world, Na’s decision was driven by his desire to have the freedom to choose when and where to play without facing potential disciplinary proceedings and legal actions from the PGA Tour. Na’s departure was followed by Dustin Johnson, a former world No. 1, who announced his resignation from the tour as well, expressing that the decision was in the best interest of himself and his family.

Phil Mickelson Makes His Comeback

Another highly anticipated return is that of Phil Mickelson, who is making his competitive comeback in the LIV Golf event after an absence since January. Mickelson’s absence from the sport was partially fueled by his controversial comments regarding LIV Golf and its Saudi Arabian ties. However, the golfer’s perspective has since evolved, and he sees this new path as a fresh start, providing a healthier approach to life both on and off the course.

Financial Incentives for Players

While not explicitly stated by the players, financial considerations likely played a role in their decision to participate in the LIV Golf Invitational Series. Rumors suggest that LIV Golf is offering substantial appearance fees, with Mickelson rumored to receive approximately $200 million and Johnson potentially earning $150 million. Additionally, the tour features a $25 million prize pool for each event, ensuring substantial earnings for participating golfers, including a guaranteed payout of $120,000 for the last-place finisher.

The Favorites and Players’ Perspectives

The betting odds are in, naming Dustin Johnson as the +400 favorite to win the first LIV Golf event. Other notable contenders include Talor Gooch (+900), Louis Oosthuizen (+1000), Sergio Garcia (+1200), and Kevin Na (+1200). Despite the controversy surrounding the Saudi-backed tour, players have expressed their intention to continue competing at major tournaments, and the United States Golf Association (USGA) has confirmed that LIV participants will not be excluded from the US Open. While acknowledging the contentious nature of their involvement, players have mostly focused on their professional role as golfers rather than delving into political discussions.


The first LIV Golf Invitational Series tournament promises an exciting start to a groundbreaking golfing event. With notable players like Phil Mickelson and Dustin Johnson headlining the event, the tournament has managed to lure some of the golfing world’s biggest names, despite the challenges associated with its Saudi-backed nature. As the competition unfolds, fans eagerly anticipate witnessing the exceptional display of skill and talent from these renowned golfers.


1. What is the significance of the LIV Golf Invitational Series?

The LIV Golf Invitational Series is a pioneering golf event that has garnered attention due to its association with the Saudi government. It aims to attract top players and provide substantial financial incentives, challenging the established structures of professional golf tournaments.

2. How many players will participate in the LIV Golf Invitational Series?

The first tournament will feature a total of 48 players, including well-known names like Phil Mickelson and Dustin Johnson, who have chosen to compete despite the controversy surrounding the series.

3. Why did Kevin Na and Dustin Johnson resign from the PGA Tour?

Kevin Na and Dustin Johnson both made the decision to resign from the PGA Tour in order to have more freedom in choosing when and where to play without facing potential consequences from the tour. They see LIV Golf as a better fit for their personal and professional aspirations.

4. What financial incentives are players receiving for participating in the LIV Golf Invitational Series?

Rumors suggest that LIV Golf is offering substantial appearance fees, with Phil Mickelson reportedly receiving around $200 million, while Dustin Johnson’s fee is estimated to be around $150 million. Additionally, the prize pool for each event is $25 million, providing significant earnings for participating golfers.

5. How can players reconcile their involvement in a controversial tour like LIV Golf?

Players have mostly focused on their role as professional golfers, prioritizing their love for the sport and their ability to compete at major tournaments. While acknowledging the controversies surrounding LIV Golf, they have chosen to avoid engaging in political discussions and instead concentrate on showcasing their skills on the golf course.

Doug I. Jones

Doug I. Jones

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