Rory McIlroy set to re-join PGA Tour Policy Board, replacing Webb Simpson: Report
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Rory McIlroy set to re-join PGA Tour Policy Board, replacing Webb Simpson: Report


Rory McIlroy is set to make a surprising return to the PGA Tour Policy Board and join the board of the newly formed PGA Tour Enterprises, according to a report.

The Guardian reported Monday that McIlroy will be voted back into a board member slot on Wednesday, replacing Webb Simpson, who is resigning his position. Simpson, the former US Open champion, specifically requested McIlroy replace him.

The four-time major winner McIlroy resigned from the PGA Tour Policy Board in November 2023 in a move that surprised observers. He was replaced by Jordan Spieth, who is serving out the remainder of McIlroy's term. The thought was that McIlroy would be leaving his position to focus on his golf game and professional life after spending so much time in 2022 and 2023 as a public face in the PGA Tour's push back against the Saudi-owned LIV Golf.

“Rory’s resignation letter, which he sent to the full board, clearly stated that the difficult decision was made due to professional and personal commitments,” said Jay Monahan, PGA Tour commissioner, in a letter to players announcing McIlroy's resignation last year.

“Given the extraordinary time and effort that Rory – and all his fellow player directors – have invested in this unprecedented, transformational period in our history, we certainly understand and respect his decision to step down in order to focus on his game and his family.”

There was also an assumption in corners of golf that the PGA Tour and Saudis would come to a final agreement that would allow for the Saudis to invest in the for-profit PGA Tour Enterprises and bring their LIV Golf assets into the organization in some fashion. The Dec. 31, 2023, soft deadline to reach a deal passed without a hint of agreement. Now a year out from when the negotiations around a framework agreement began in secret, the two sides have struggled to find common ground.

The player directors on the policy board met Saudi Public Investment Fund governor Yasir Al-Rumayyan in March after The Players Championship, marking the first time the players had met the LIV Golf owner. McIlroy commented at the time that the meeting should have happened long ago. McIlroy has met with Al-Rumayyan in person in the past to get a sense of what he seeks from an investment in golf, and McIlroy has long expressed the belief that the Saudi money should be funneled into the existing professional golf ecosystem rather than starting something net new. He was unhappy with Spieth

At the Masters, policy board member Tiger Woods said the meeting with Al-Rumayyan was a step in the right direction, even if the two sides don't see eye-to-eye on the future of professional golf, team golf and LIV Golf's place in the sport.

McIlroy would return to the board with key relationships with the DP World Tour, who was a party to the framework agreement, as well as new PGA Tour Enterprises investors, Strategic Sports Group, which also has a stake in TGL, the hybrid indoor golf league co-founded by McIlroy and Woods.

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Ryan Ballengee

Ryan Ballengee is founder and editor of Golf News Net. He has been writing and broadcasting about golf for nearly 20 years. Ballengee lives in the Washington, D.C. area with his family. He is currently a +2.6 USGA handicap, and he has covered dozens of major championships and professional golf tournaments. He likes writing about golf and making it more accessible by answering the complex questions fans have about the pro game or who want to understand how to play golf better.

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