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After LIV Golf conceded defeat in its hunt of Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR) points, Jon Rahm admitted that he wasn’t aware that the breakaway tour was still actively pursuing the board’s recognition.

“I’m going to be honest, I didn’t know they were still trying to get world ranking points,” the Masters champion said in Hong Kong ahead of LIV’s fourth event of the season.

Unlike some of his LIV colleagues, Rahm does not have to worry about his world ranking falling because he is already exempt for majors for the next five seasons due to last year’s triumph at Augusta National.

Others, however, are finding alternative routes into the career-defining tournaments after LIV commissioner Greg Norman told his players in a letter obtained by bunkered.co.uk that the “OWGR has shown little willingness to productively work with us.”

• Brandel Chamblee tears into Jon Rahm over LIV Golf move

• Jon Rahm responds to LIV Golf’s world ranking points decision

Joaquin Niemann, for example, has earned spots into the Masters, PGA Championship and The Open, owing to his impressive performances during LIV’s offseason on the DP World Tour.

“I’m very happy to see Joaco (Niemann) get invites,” Rahm said. “To be fair, he’s shown the interest of wanting to qualify many different ways and has played the way you’re supposed to play, so I think it’s only right that he gets invites.”

However, Rahm is now more concerned that the best performing LIV player in 2023 won’t get a look in at all.

Talor Gooch was LIV’s individual champion with three tournament wins last year, but will need to go through qualifying if he is to play in any majors this season after sliding to No. 476 in the rankings.

“I think there’s one player that played fantastic all last season that’s been a little bit left out, and not saying that they all have to, but I think Talor Gooch should be under consideration to possibly get an invite into those majors, as well,” Rahm insisted.

• LIV Golf stars excluded from Presidents Cup selection

• LIV Golf star claims standard is ’10 times better’ than DP World Tour

“He was the best player out here last year, and if that doesn’t show good golf and being worthy of being in majors, I don’t know what does. While we don’t have a clear path to majors through LIV yet, I think they should be taking everybody under consideration.”

Gooch, meanwhile, was asked by Australian Golf Digest about not getting a special invite like Niemann to the Masters.

“It’s not surprising. I think the majors have kind of shown that they’re not getting on board with LIV,” he said.

“Joaco went outside of LIV and played some great golf and they rewarded him for that. So hopefully the day will turn when the majors decide to start rewarding good play on LIV. Hopefully that’ll be sooner than later.”


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Ben Parsons joined bunkered as a Content Producer in 2023 and is the man to come to for all of the latest news, across both the professional and amateur games. Formerly of The Mirror and Press Association, he is a member at Halifax Golf Club and is a long-suffering fan of both Manchester United and the Wales rugby team.

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