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A man of Tommy Fleetwood’s popularity was never likely to fly under the radar at a golf tournament. 

It came as no surprise whatsoever then that his visit to a LIV Golf event at the start of the season sparked a frenzy on social media.

Fleetwood had already confirmed that he was one of the leading figures from the European Ryder Cup team that LIV were attempting to coax during a productive off-season.

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So when he pitched up at LIV’s Las Vegas showpiece in early February with Jon Rahm and Tyrrell Hatton making their second appearances on the Saudi-backed circuit, speculation was inevitably rife.

Fleetwood, though, was unconcerned and visited the Las Vegas Country Club with genuine intrigue whilst in Nevada for a lesson with his esteemed coach Butch Harmon.

“I really didn’t think that much about it,” Fleetwood told the Guardian. “I was over there, lots of us talk about LIV but never see it so I wanted to see what a tournament was like.

“There are also so many people there that we don’t see any more, who I would still class as friends. Players, people who work on the tour, my trainer works there. So I had a free morning, went for a few hours and that was it.

• ‘Deal with it’ – Rocco Mediate defends Chris DiMarco’s LIV remark

• Cam Smith claims key change will help LIV golfers at Masters

“I didn’t want to feel like I couldn’t go just because people would say things. I think it came across that I just wanted to go and see friends and that really was the main thing. It was nice to see a lot of people.”

On the LIV action itself, Fleetwood added: “There are certain things I wasn’t used to; the music, I don’t know how I would feel about playing with that. Beyond that my biggest takeaway was that it was just another golf tournament.

“Everyone seemed very professional and working very hard. It’s basically just a bunch of people who you knew out here that are now there. So many things have just carried over.”

As it stands, there are just four times a year that Fleetwood can take on his former rivals on the LIV circuit.

At next week’s Masters, the 33-year-old will hope to eclipse 13 LIV golfers in the field, as well as the overwhelming favourite Scottie Scheffler, to seal his maiden major crown.

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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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