Henrik Stenson: "It would certainly be the irony of ironies!"

LIV Golf's Henrik Stenson is not ruling out qualifying for the 2023 Ryder Cup as he revealed he won't "play the guessing game" over looming legal showdown.

Ben Smith's picture
Mon, 23 Jan 2023
Henrik Stenson: "It would certainly be the irony of ironies!"

Henrik Stenson hasn't given up hope of playing in the 2023 Ryder Cup if he isn't banned permanently from the DP World Tour. 

Stenson returned to the European-based circuit last week at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship.

That was won by Victor Perez after he holed a miracle shot from a bunker in a mad 15 minutes of high drama at Yas Links. 

Related: LIV Golf "withdraw offer" for potential recruit

There was a lot of chatter beforehand about the LIV Golf League players teeing it up on the circuit at the first Rolex Series event of 2023. 

Stenson's replacement Luke Donald - who was involved in this nightmare hole - described the Swede returning as "strange". 

That being said, Stenson has not given up hope of teeing it up at the Marco Simone Golf & Country Club in Rome this September. 

Stenson finished in 20th place last week and earned €90,308.89 in the process. 

The Swede won $4m for winning on his LIV Golf debut and $5,566,000 overall in the breakaway tour's inaugural season

He was reportedly convinced to risk his Ryder Cup captaincy by signing a $40m joining fee with LIV. 

He told GolfDigest if the sports arbitration case is favourable to the LIV players he could see himself playing more events on the DP World Tour.

Stenson said: 

"I've always supported Europe. It's been a big part of my career. Nothing will ever change that. In fact, I could see me playing here more often than in past years if it turns out I can. It's all a tangle at the moment though."

Related: Stenson "quietly confident" LIV players will win court case

Stenson is due to play the Dubai Desert Classic at Emirates GC over 26-29 January. 

Other players in the field who have played in LIV events include Patrick Reed, Lee Westwood, Bernd Wiesberger, Adrian Otaegui, Richard Bland, Ian Poulter, Oliver Bekker, Hennie du Plessis, Pablo Larrazabal and Adri Arnaus. 

All of their DP World Tour careers could be over when a sports arbitration panel rules over whether or not they can be banned from the circuit.  

Stenson added: 

"I'll be watching the arbitration case with interest. I'm not going to guess on the result. But it will be interesting to see what comes after it. I still want to play on this tour. In my mind, nothing has changed from when I started playing on multiple tours. 
"If I go out and win the Open Championship again and do well elsewhere, I might qualify. It's not impossible. And it would certainly be the irony of ironies. But until we know exactly what is happening, no one can say what the situation is going to be. I'm not a guy who wants to guess."

Stenson's comments come after Westwood questioned the future of the DP World Tour. 

Taking a dig at their alliance with the PGA Tour, the former World No.1 explained he didn't recognise the European Tour anymore

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