WASHINGTON (AFP) – British Open champion Cameron Smith of Australia is among several US PGA Tour players who will defect to the Saudi-backed rival LIV Golf Series, according to multiple reports on Saturday.
World number two Smith had been the subject of several reports about joining LIV Golf shortly after lifting the Claret Jug last month, but has avoided discussion of the subject while playing in this month’s PGA FedEx Cup playoffs.
Golf Channel, ESPN and Sports Illustrated cited unnamed sources in reporting that several big-name PGA players were waiting until after the completion of the PGA’s Tour Championship in Atlanta to announce their plans to join LIV Golf.
Smith will play in next week’s LIV Golf event in Boston along with compatriot Marc Leishman, India’s Anirban Lahiri, Chile’s Joaquin Niemann and Americans Harold Varner and Cameron Tringale, according to Sports Illustrated and ESPN; while Golf Channel named all but Lahiri.
Chilean Mito Pereira will also leave for LIV Golf but was uncertain for Boston, leaving his status up in the air for next month’s Presidents Cup in Charlotte, North Carolina.