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It’s the start of a new era on the DP World Tour. 

Keith Pelley has vacated the hot seat at Wentworth HQ after almost nine years to become President and CEO of Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment in Toronto. Guy Kinnings has now officially been promoted from his role as the Canadian’s deputy CEO to become the new man in charge of European golf.

Kinnings, a former leading golf figure at IMG, moved to the European Tour Group back in 2018 and has also served as Ryder Cup director. He becomes just the fifth person to lead the circuit since its inception back in 1972.

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“Today is a very proud day for me and my family,” he said. “It is a real privilege to become the Chief Executive of the European Tour Group and it is a responsibility I do not take lightly.

“Our Tour has such a wonderful history, and I am delighted to have this opportunity to help shape the next exciting phase in its evolution.”

Kinnings has taken the reins at a critical juncture in the history of the elite men’s game. Professional golf is at a crossroads as the DP World Tour and PGA Tour aim to find a resolution to ongoing talks with the Saudi Public Investment Fund bankrolling LIV Golf.

And just like Pelley before his departure, Kinnings has stressed his focus is on unifying a fractured sport.

“I have been working closely with our players, our Board, our partners and our staff over the past six years and I feel we have a great opportunity to look forward and to focus on unity and alignment in the game,” he added. “There has been a shift in our sport to a more global mindset and that is something, as golf’s global Tour, that we welcome.

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“We have a widely recognised international footprint, stemming from 50 years of building relationships and staging tournaments in many different countries and continents and this allows us to appeal to golf fans from a wide variety of different backgrounds and demographics. We very much look forward to continuing that.”

The global position of the DP World Tour remains somewhat unclear in a new golf landscape, but European Tour Group chairman Eric Nicoli is convinced Kinnings is the right man to lead the circuit forward.

“This is a hugely significant day for the European Tour Group as a whole and on behalf of the entire Board, I am delighted to welcome Guy to the role of CEO,” Nicoli said.

“He is vastly experienced, is hugely respected throughout the golf industry and has strong relationships right across our sport. Our deliberate and purposeful succession planning will ensure a seamless transition in our leadership at this pivotal time in the evolution of the men’s professional game.

“We are looking forward to working closely with Guy to take advantage of the opportunities that await us, and to take our Tour to even greater heights on behalf of the entirety of our membership.”

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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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