Report: British Open Champion Cameron Smith Heading to LIV Golf

Report: British Open Champion Cameron Smith Heading to LIV Golf

Published August 10, 2022
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Cameron Smith, who won the British Open at St. Andrews with a final-round 64, is apparently headed to the LIV Golf Invitational Series along with fellow Australian Marc Leishman following the FedEx Cup playoffs.

Another Aussie golfer, Cameron Percy, told RSN Radio Australia in Melbourne that “unfortunately, yeah they’re gone,’’ and that the details are already done.

Smith appeared at a scheduled press conference on Tuesday at the FedEx St. Jude Championship and when asked about the report said: “My goal here is to win the FedEx Cup playoffs. That’s all I’m here for.

“If there’s something I need to say regarding the PGA Tour or LIV, it will come from Cameron Smith, not Cameron Percy. I’m a man of my word and whenever you guys need to know anything, it’ll be said by me.” 

A LIV Golf representative would not comment on the radio interview and Bud Martin, the agent for both Smith and Leishman, could not be reached.

The next LIV Golf Invitational Series event is scheduled for Sept. 2-4, the week following the Tour Championship.

Smith is playing for the first time this week following his Open victory at the FedEx St. Jude Championship, the first of three FedEx Cup playoff events. Smith is second in the points standings behind Scottie Scheffler. Leishman, 38, the winner of six PGA Tour events, is ranked 62nd in FedEx points.

Ranked second in the world, Smith, 28, would be a big acquisition for LIV Golf. His relative youth along with his standing in the world rankings are huge positives, along with his recent status as a major winner.

In addition to his victory at the Old Course, Smith won the Players Championship this year—leading to the awkward possibility of the tournament not having its defending champion next year due to Tour sanctions—as well as the Sentry Tournament of Champions. He has six PGA Tour wins.

After his victory at the Open, Smith was annoyed about a question concerning his possible involvement in LIV Golf, his answer not exactly shooting down the idea.

“I just won the British Open and you’re asking about that?’’ he said.

If Smith does go, it appears he will do so prior to the Presidents Cup, which is in late September and would be another blow to the International team that will be captained by Trevor Immelman. Already potential team members such as Abraham Ancer and Carlos Ortiz have gone to LIV Golf. Leishman would have been another potential player in the competition.

Smith said Tuesday he’s still expecting to play in the Presidents Cup.

“Absolutely, yeah. That’s something that we’ve been looking forward to for the last three years,” Smith said Tuesday. “We missed a year because of COVID and that’s something that I look forward to being a part of.” 

Smith and Leishman would undoubtedly form the core of an all-Aussie LIV team although there is already a team consisting of Aussies Wayne Ormsby, Matt Jones, Travis Smyth and Jediah Morgan.

Jones joined 10 other LIV golfers in suing the PGA Tour on anti-competitive grounds and along with Talor Gooch and Hudson Swafford was seeking a temporary restraining order allowing him to play this week at the FedEx St. Jude tournament. The request was denied Tuesday by a federal district court judge.

Bob Harig is a golf writer for Morning Read/SI.com and the author of the book “Tiger and Phil: Golf’s Most Fascinating Rivalry,’’ which was published in April 2022 and can be ordered here.