The Saud-backed LIV Golf series is reportedly considering using a less established ranking system as they continue to be overlooked for Official World Golf Ranking accreditation
The LIV breakaway series could soon ditch the traditional ranking system as frustration grows over the ongoing failure to gain recognition in golf’s official standings.
Saudi-funded circuit LIV Golf, fronted by Greg Norman, has so far been overlooked by the Official World Golf Rankings (OWGR) board in their application for the accreditation that would further validate the contentious venture.
LIV’s pursuit of elusive OWGR status has proved a key battleground in golf’s civil war with rebel players set to miss out on major championship qualification without crucial access to the ranking points, unless they have exemptions.
High-profile defectors Dustin Johnson and Brooks Koepka have both plummeted below the world’s top 50 since moving to LIV. And former world No.1 Johnson’s slide down the rankings is perhaps the greatest demonstration that the current system is now deceptive and not completely accurate.
LIV’s firebrand Norman indicated before The Open Championship last July that LIV were pushing for OWGR accreditation, and the latest application has been blocked because the 54-hole, 48-man invitational events do not meet the board’s criteria.
But the Daily Mail are now reporting that a growing feeling of discontent with OWGR’s continued snub is causing LIV bosses to consider alternate options altogether.
It is acknowledged that LIV still have no intentions of withdrawing its application to the OWGR body, but they are now weighing up the possibility of adopting a less established different ranking structure.
LIV are said to be keeping tabs on the newly-launched Sports Illustrated World Golf Rankings, which has partnered with Golf Intelligence to create its own list of top 100 players, which is determined by including the performances of LIV renegades.
The Universal Golf Rankings system is also being considered, with the view to LIV switching to one of those systems if they are still overlooked after the next two events of their expanded 14-event second season in April.
A number of LIV rebels are close to falling outside the world’s top 50, which would see them miss the Masters at Augusta next month.
And it has been reported that the OWGR’s continued reluctance to award LIV with ranking status is down to the lack of a relegation format, with some players on guaranteed contracts that rules out a large amount of jeopardy in their events.