Watch: LIV hopeful tops shot into water after four-putting in dramatic playoff

England's Laurie Canter missed out on a spot in the 2024 LIV Golf League after a dramatic playoff at Abu Dhabi Golf Club.

Ben Smith's picture
Sun, 10 Dec 2023
Watch: LIV hopeful tops shot into water after four-putting in dramatic playoff

Laurie Canter has already had a taste of the LIV Golf League

The English tour pro played in all seven LIV events during their 'beta-test' 2022 campaign and made 11 starts in 2023. 

Primarily, the golfer has been part of Ian Poulter, Lee Westwood and Henrik Stenson's Majesticks team, playing instead of the injured Sam Horsfield. 

He did not manage to get himself a deal for the 2024 season, and so opted to take part in LIV Golf Promotions this week at Abu Dhabi Golf Club for one of the three golden tickets on offer.

Canter managed to get himself into a playoff during Sunday's finale, which finished under the lights. 

But his hopes of competing on the rival league next season were dashed in one of the cruelest, we've all been there ways imaginable. 

After getting into a playoff, Canter four-putted the first hole. Then at the second, he topped his second shot into the water. 

That led to a double bogey and his race was run. Ouch!

Watch the moment here:

Who punched their ticket into the 2024 LIV Golf League?

Finland's Kalle Samooja clinched victory, concluding the day at eight-under par with impressive rounds of 65 and 71 in Sunday's marathon finish.

This triumph marked a historic moment as Samooja became the first Finn to secure a place on the league.

After his remarkable round, Samooja said: "It means a lot. That's why we're all here. We all knew there are three spots available, three cards, and everyone was after those cards.

"My only mission was to make it to Sunday and then give it all I have, and we're standing here."

Reflecting on the impact of this achievement and its significance in his native Finland, Samooja added: "It's going to be massive, I think. Golf is booming back home in Finland. We have guys, one guy on PGA Tour, European Tour, now LIV Golf, so it's going to be massive for Finnish golf."

The pursuit of the remaining two spots on LIV Golf transformed into an intense battle as three players finished Sunday's 36-hole contest at seven-under par.

This deadlock led to a playoff to determine the two qualifiers for the league. After two playoff holes, conducted under the lights at Abu Dhabi Golf Club's 18th hole, Japanese player Jinichiro Kozuma and Zimbabwean Kieran Vincent emerged victorious.

It was heartbreak for the aforementioned Canter, who missed out on his guaranteed place in the LIV Golf roster in 2024 after a three-putt on the first playoff hole and a double bogey on the second hole handed the remaining two spots to Kozuma and Vincent.

Jinichiro Kozuma, the sole Japanese player in the LIV Golf League in 2024, said: "Last year when I played in a spot in LIV Golf, I said that I wanted to come back again for sure, and to be real now, it's like a dream.

"I was in good shape with my golf, so I knew that I had a chance to make it if I made good three rounds. But it's just a dream come true. I didn't try to be in the best three, but I made it."

Kozuma faced challenges on the first playoff hole but remained composed, holing a clutch par putt on 18 to keep his LIV Golf dreams alive and eventually prevailing on the second playoff hole.

"I was just a little bit in a give-up mood after I missed my tee shot," he said.  "But just thinking hard that never give up is something which could be a good result. When I made the par putt on the first playoff hole, I thought that it could be okay for me."

Kieran Vincent, forming the only brother duo on the LIV Golf league in 2024 alongside his brother Scott Vincent of the IronHeads GC, said: "I think it's awesome.

"Obviously, he's a great player and someone I've looked up to for pretty much my whole life. To be playing alongside him again is going to be awesome, but just to learn from the rest of the guys I think is something I'm looking forward to the most."

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