You have probably heard about the LIV Tour by now, mostly because it’s all the golf media wants to talk about, but how do the tournaments work?
They are unique tournaments compared to the PGA Tour and DP World Tour, but casual golfers have played the LIV format many times over.
We look at why the format is a danger to the way we watch golf and how golf odds are affected.
LIV Golf Format
A typical PGA Tour event is played over 72 holes in four days. However, LIV Golf is played over 54 holes in three days.
The creators of the LIV Tour opted for a more streamlined event. It helps with the Tik-Tok generation and makes for a more even contest, especially with the field being limited in numbers for the time being.
The most notable difference is the shotgun start format. Every player tees off at the same time on a different hole, so viewers get to see all the golfers in action at the same time.
It’s a brilliant idea, especially for television, and it makes it an even playing field. Often, on the PGA Tour, players teeing off early get favorable conditions and it can determine who wins the tournament.
There is no such form on the LIV Tour, so despite all the negative press surrounding the morality of the tour, they’re smart.
Every player finishes around the same time, so there is no waiting in the clubhouse and no heading off to the driving range for practice. In a tight finish, players will rely on live scoring updates to see where they have finished.
It takes away from the grandstand finish on the 18th, but it speeds up play and there is also no cut. Having no cut is a massive drawcard for any professional, especially those struggling to play on the weekend.
The sportsbook could find it tough to offer live betting for LIV Tour events, which is a downside to betting on the sport.
Apart from the Ryder Cup and Presidents Cup, we’re used to watching golf as an individual sport. There are massive individual prizes available but there is a team prize, which is mouthwateringly attractive.
There are 12 captains who draft three teammates each week. The best two stroke-play scores out of the three count toward the team total, which is another way to earn big money on the LIV Tour.
There are no golf betting markets for the team events yet, but we expect markets to open once the LIV Tour becomes a firm fixture on the golfing calendar.
What Do They Win?
The winner of the first event in London picked up $4 million for the individual prize, not including the team prize.
The last-place finisher gets $120,000, which is the main draw card for the Tour. There are some players who struggled to pick up that when winning events, let alone finishing last.
The winning team gets $3 million split among the four golfers; $1.5 million goes to second; and $500,000 for third.
Golfers get insane prizemoney on the LIV Tour, so expect to see more players sign up – and we haven’t mentioned signing fees, which have reached nine figures.
What Do They Lose?
Players on the LIV Tour can’t earn world golf ranking points and they’re in danger of not being accepted back onto a world tour.
They are also being excluded from team competitions, such as the Ryder Cup, and participation in majors could come under threat.
Tour organizer Greg Norman has applied to get world ranking points, but we don’t like his chances.
“We’re actually applying for OWGR points right now. We’re actually putting in our application probably over the weekend, if not Monday,” Norman told USA Today. “And it’s a very compelling application. We’ve worked very, very closely with the technical committee understanding all the components of what you need to apply for it.”