Jon Rahm not confident LIV Golf players will feel welcome at The Masters

Jon Rahm makes honest admission ahead of LIV Golf players competing at The Masters next month. 

Jon Rahm not confident LIV Golf players will feel welcome at The Masters

Jon Rahm believes "quite a few" people will be unhappy that LIV Golf players are competing in The Masters next month. 

Rahm, 29, made his feelings be known during a teleconference ahead of the year's first major at Augusta National from 11-14 April. 

The defending champion revealed his choice of menu for the Masters Champions Dinner during the call. 

Rahm sent shockwaves through the sport towards the end of 2023 when he announced he was accepting a reported $600m fee to join the LIV Golf League. 

That not only saw him suspended by the PGA Tour, but also put his Ryder Cup prospects in doubt

Rahm set up a new LIV Golf League team called Legion XIII where he acquired the services of his European Ryder Cup teammate Tyrrell Hatton.

Caleb Surratt and Kieran Vincent also joined. 

Now settled into LIV life, Rahm addressed the media with how his game is shaping up ahead of his Masters defence, and the reception LIV Golf players will likely face when they drive down Magnolia Lane. 

Rahm told reporters on the call: 

"I’ve been playing good golf, but I’m definitely looking forward to joining with the rest of the best golfers in the world and teeing it up in the Masters with them.
"I’m assuming there will be quite a few that are not happy, but from my side nothing changes. I still respect everybody on both sides and respect the game of golf above all.
"I think there’s a way of co-existing and, if there’s some type of union, I don’t know what that looks like. I just want to see again the best in the world being able to compete against the best in the world, whatever that looks like.
"If there is some type of peace achieved I think it can actually push the game forward."

Rahm's teleconference fell on the same day that Tiger Woods and other PGA Tour player directors met with LIV Golf chairman and Saudi PIF governor Yasir Al-Rumayyan in the Bahamas in a bid to help unify the sport. 

PGA Tour boss Jay Monahan sent a memo to the membership confirming the meeting went well.

Woods even played a round of golf with Al-Rumayyan.

Jon Rahm thinks his game is trending ahead of Masters defence

Although Rahm has yet to win an individual title in his first four LIV Golf starts, he has finished third, eighth, fifth and 14th. 

That form is in stark contrast to how he warmed up for his first Masters title last season, however, as Rahm had already locked away three titles to start the season by the time he rocked up at Augusta National. 

Nevertheless, Rahm believes his game is trending the right direction with three weeks until the first round. 

Jon Rahm not confident LIV Golf players will feel welcome at The Masters

Rahm said: 

"I feel like my game is in really good position. I have not played my best yet, but I can see it every tournament getting a little bit better and getting to a point where I like where I’m at coming up to the Masters.
"I am looking forward to hopefully having a great week and a great Sunday back-nine showdown with some of those great players because at the end of the day it’s what golf and spectators deserve.
"With that said, I’m hoping I can cruise the last three holes with an eight or nine-shot lead and know I can walk up 18 knowing I can make a nine or a 10 and win it, but it would be really fun also to come down to the wire and make a birdie on 18 to win it. That would be quite incredible."

Rahm is currently priced up at odds of 14/1 to win The Masters.

Scottie Scheffler is a warm 9/2 tournament favourite as he bids to slip on his second green jacket in the space of three years.

World No.1 Scheffler has successfully defended the last two tournaments on the PGA Tour at the Arnold Palmer Invitational and The Players Championship. 

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