Rory McIlroy shuts down reporter's question over Tiger Woods spat

Rory McIlroy claims his relationship with Tiger Woods is not strained as he confirmed he will be part of the PGA Tour's peace talks with LIV Golf.

Rory McIlroy
Rory McIlroy

Rory McIlroy has played down talks his relationship with Tiger Woods is 'strained' after it emerged the 15-time major champion voted against the Northern Irishman returning to the PGA Tour's policy board. 

McIlroy quit his influential position five months ago in an apparent huff with how peace talks were going with LIV Golf's Saudi backers to consummate last June's framework agreement. 

But last month it appeared McIlroy wanted his seat back as little progress has been made between the two tours to formulate a pathway forward. 


Player director Webb Simpson said he was happy to give up his seat on the condition that McIlroy return. 

But Jordan Spieth, Tiger Woods and Patrick Cantlay were among the 'faction' of players who did not want McIlroy to return. 

The trio's views are at odds with McIlroy's. 

McIlroy wants the PGA Tour to adopt a truly global schedule where LIV players can return to the fold with no caveat. 

Asked specifically about his friendship with Woods after the first round of the Wells Fargo Championship, McIlroy said: "I would say, I mean, I think friends can have disagreements or not see things -- I guess not -- not see eye to eye on things but have disagreements on things. 

"I think that's fine. But no, I wouldn't say -- we had a really good talk last Friday for 45 minutes just about a lot of different things. 

"No, there's no strain there. I think we might see the future of golf a little bit differently, but I don't think that should place any strain on a relationship or on a friendship."

Tiger Woods
Tiger Woods

Earlier in the day it emerged the aforementioned Woods would be the only player involved in face-to-face meetings with the Saudis along with three officials and player liaison Joe Ogilvie. 

Woods is now part of a 'transaction subcommittee' that will report back to the player directors. 

McIlroy has confirmed that he's part of that committee, despite not having his seat back on the board. 

"I'm on that transaction committee, too," McIlroy said. 

He added: "I've already had calls with that group, I had a really good hour and a half Zoom with those guys on Sunday, we went through a 150 page doc about the future product model and everything. 

"Yeah, I'm not on the board, but I'm in some way involved in that transaction committee. I don't have a vote so I don't -- you know, I don't have I guess a meaningful say in what happens in the future, but at least I can -- I feel like I can be helpful on that committee, and that was sort of a compromise for I guess not getting a board seat." 

McIlroy said although he is not back on the board the next best option was for Simpson to complete his term. 

He said: "I don't necessarily think or believe that people didn't want me involved, it was more just the process of how I could get involved again, right? 

"Like the board has went through this massive eight-month governance review, and what happened with Webb and I and that whole thing, that was outside of the scope of the governance, right? So then what's the process look like to try to bring me back in?"

Rory McIlroy
Rory McIlroy

He added: "That was really the sticking point with it all. So yeah, look, we tried to get to a compromise where, you know, I stuck my hand up and said, look, I can be helpful if this is what Webb wants to do.

"It was really tricky to do that, so I'm involved in the transaction committee and that's basically to try to get this deal done with PIF.

"I feel like I've got good relationships on both sides there and hopefully I can bring something to the table and try to, yeah, provide some insight and value and see if we can get this thing done."

Checked out our podcast yet?

Listen to The Par FORE Podcast presented by GolfMagic:

Or watch on YouTube:

Remote video URL

Sponsored Posts