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Mcllroy, his view of the Middle East and the statements made ahead of 2022 U.S. Open

Mcllroy says not all Saudi Arabian people are bad, but is disappointed in player, like Phil Mickelson, for taking part in the Saudi-backed golf event.

BROOKLINE, MASSACHUSETTS - JUNE 14: Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland plays his shot from the tenth tee during a practice round prior to the US Open at The Country Club on June 14, 2022 in Brookline, Massachusetts.   Andrew Redington/Getty Images/AFP
Andrew RedingtonAFP

Rory McIlroy, who just celebrated a fresh win at the RBC Canadian Open, is getting ready to face some of the players who have chosen the LIV Golf Series as their preferred golf tour, in the U.S. Open this week.

Phil Mickelson, Dustin Johnson, Bryson DeChambeau are a few of the big names Mcllroy will be playing against, and are also some of the players stealing headlines with the controversial Saudi-backed circuit that’s overshadowing this week’s major event.

On Tuesday, the 2011 U.S. Open winner expressed his confusion about some of these players and the reasons behind their choices, as well as his personal views on the event.

Mcllroy’s views on players joining the LIV Golf

Not only does Mcllroy believe the PGA Tour “is the right thing to do,” but he also believes that it stands for something bigger.

“The PGA Tour was created by people and tour players that came before us, the likes of Jack Nicklaus and Arnold Palmer, they created something and worked hard for something. I just hate to see all the players that came before us and all the hard work that they’ve put in just come out to be nothing.”

“The majority of people in the Middle East are very nice people”

When asked about his perspective on families affected by 9/11 and their point of views on the Saudi-backed event, Mcllroy made it clear that he understands and empathizes with these families, even though he has met very nice people during his time in the Middle East.

“Everything that’s happening with this tour (LIV Golf), legitimizes their place in the world. I’m not saying every Saudi Arabian is a bad person — we’re talking about this in such a generalized way. I’ve spent a lot of time in the Middle East, and the vast majority of people that I’ve met there are very, very nice people, but there’s bad people everywhere. The bad people that came from that part of the world did some absolutely horrendous things.”

Mcllroy sees golf with a wider lens

Mcllroy also shared that while he does not support the players’ decisions to play those events, he’s still going to remain close with them. “It’s not as if you agree with absolutely everything that all your friends do. You’re gonna have a difference of opinion in a lot of things. And that’s fine — that’s what makes this a great world. We can’t all agree on everything.”

The 33-year-old continued to share that he believes these guys, especially the ones with a similar age, are seemingly thinking short-term and aren’t necessarily “looking at the bigger picture”. While for him, he’s tried to “see this with a wider lens from the start.”

What Mcllroy thinks of Mickelson

When asked whether he lost respect for the six-time Major winning American, Mickelson, for joining the Saudi-backed event, Mcllroy was clear about his views. “As a golfer, I have the utmost respect for Phil.

I’ve been disappointed with how he’s went about what he’s done. But I think he has come back and shown some remorse about how he’s handled some things, so I think he’s learned from that.”


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