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Tour and Saudis agree on some items with work still to go to finalize any deal

The PGA Tour and the Saudi backers of LIV Golf reached consensus on several items during its meeting its recent meeting in New York. Commissioner Jay Monahan cautioned players Tuesday night “there is still work to do” before any agreement.

Monahan sent players a memo after the PGA Tour policy board and the commercial PGA Tour Enterprises board held a joint meeting during the Travelers Championship in Connecticut.

He did not share specifics, only saying the goal was to develop “a shared vision for the future of professional golf” that gives players the best global opportunities.

The meeting with Yasir Al-Rumayyan, governor of the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia, and PGA Tour Enterprises board members including Tiger Woods, Adam Scott and Rory McIlroy, was May 11.

Monahan also announced a few tweaks for the PGA Tour schedule in 2025, while saying the revamped model that caters to the top performers from the previous year are still creating roughly the same level of turnover.

One big change involves Woods. The board approved an additional sponsor exemption in the $20 million signature events specifically for Woods “as a player who has reached an exceptional lifetime achievement” of 80-plus wins in his career.

Woods has played only four times this year — three majors and taking one of the four sponsor exemptions for his Genesis Invitational at Riviera, where he had to withdraw with the flu.

The player-hosted signature events — Riviera, Bay Hill and Memorial — are the only small fields with a cut. Monahan said the tour board and Player Advisory Council will study whether all the signature should have a cut. The board took no action.

The board did approve a minimum 72 players for the signature events, creating an alternate list based on the current FedEx Cup standings for the players not already eligible. Players complained this year when fields dipped below 70. In the Arnold Palmer Invitational this year, the 69-man field meant one player — Nick Dunlap — had to start the tournament as a single.

The Travelers Championship this week only has 71 players after McIlroy withdrew.

The top 50 in the FedEx Cup are exempt for all the $20 million events. More players competed in other events, particularly early in the season, which limited starts for players who had conditional status, such as those finishing Nos. 126-150.

The board said it would not reshuffle the ranking of conditional players next year until they have had a chance to play three or four times.

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AP golf: https://apnews.com/hub/golf

Doug Ferguson, The Associated Press