LIV Golf plans to go through with its schedule for the remainder of the year and 2024 despite the agreement to merge with the PGA Tour, former world number one Dustin Johnson said.
The PGA Tour, DP World Tour and rival Saudi-backed LIV circuit announced the shock agreement to form one unified commercial entity last week, bringing an end to a bitter fight that had split the sport.
There is uncertainty about how the golf calendar will look next year under the framework of the merger, with some doubts being raised about whether the LIV Golf League team-based competition would even exist after its 2023 season.
World number three Rory McIlroy said he fully expected LIV to “go away” after the merger.
However, Johnson, one of the star recruits of the breakaway circuit, said he learned from Yasir Al-Rumayyan that the circuit would continue next year.
Al-Rumayyan is the governor of Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF), which bankrolls LIV and will also chair the board of the new commercial entity that will form after the merger.
“Everything I’ve heard, they’re still working on a full schedule for next year,” Johnson told ESPN on Wednesday. “The rest of this year and 2024 is going to be the same as far as I know. After that, you know as much as I do.
“We just don’t know what it’s going to look like here. We’ll probably know some more in the next six months, but as for now, everything’s just going to stay the same.
“I’m just glad at some point we’re all going to come together and we’re not battling each other anymore.”
Former U.S. Open champion Bryson DeChambeau, one of the first big names to sign up for LIV, said he spoke to Al-Rumayyan before the deal was announced on June 6.
“I don’t think (LIV) will go away,” DeChambeau said. “This is what was talked about. Those are private conversations, and I don’t know exactly what his future plans are ... There are a lot of unknowns.
“I don’t want to speak for him, but he did tell me something that could be a bigger stage ... a big global event that could be really, really cool.”
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