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LIV rebels could be permitted to represent Europe at next year’s Ryder Cup if a legal challenge is not resolved.

Guy Kinnings, the director of Ryder Cup Europe, admitted the breakaway stars – including legends of the biennial clash such as Ian Poulter and Sergio Garcia – are “entitled to play” as it stands.

Several players, including Poulter, took legal action against the DP World Tour after they were barred from playing in the Genesis Scottish Open, which was co-sanctioned with the PGA Tour.

They were awarded a temporary solution allowing them to take part, with their case yet to be heard.

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Kinnings suggested that if their challenge is successful, they will be allowed to play in Rome next year.

However, he hinted the European body plans to take a similar approach to the PGA of America by declaring them ineligible for the contest if they are unsuccessful.

“The position isn’t clear,” he said at a press conference following the appointment of Luke Donald as captain.

“There are legal appeals ongoing, and until such time the players are entitled to play; and therefore, you know, The Ryder Cup qualification process when it does get announced, then that has to be something that Luke will be working on with us.

“Then the points will run, but I suspect they will be much as they are with The PGA of America, listing players that are mentioned but subject to eligibility. That’s all to be seen in the coming weeks, and we’ll work around whatever is needed to help Luke in the cause.”

Donald himself refused to be drawn on whether LIV players could form part of his lineup next year.

“Obviously part of being a captain is to create a strong 12-man unified team, and I’ll be working on that over the next 14 months,” he said.

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“I’m not here to talk about LIV and whether they will be eligible or not. That’s to be seen and kind of a hypothetical question. But certainly over the next few months, hopefully we’ll have some clarity on that situation and we can start making some decisions about that when they become more clear.”

“There’s obviously some distractions going on,” Donald added.

“But there’s been lots of captaincies in Ryder Cups where there’s been issues. We saw that last year with Pádraig and Steve with Covid. We saw that with Sam Torrance and Curtis Strange had to deal with the terrorist attacks of 9/11.

“These things happen and we’ll just go through them as we get them and deal with them in the best possible way.”

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