Rory McIlroy brands Brooks Koepka and fellow LIV Golf Series players 'duplicitous' after performing U-turns on the PGA Tour to join the controversial Saudi backed events

  • Brooks Koepka is the latest to join the Saudi backed breakaway LIV Golf Series
  • It follows Dustin Johnson's decision to join series months after PGA commitment
  • Rory McIlroy admits he cannot understand the U-turn of his rivals 
  • The world No 2 admits Koepka's decision to join the tour had left him 'surprised' 

World No 2 Rory McIlroy has labelled the players who have joined the LIV Golf Series 'duplicitous' for the way they have handled their breakaway.

Fellow four-time major winner Brooks Koepka, whose brother Chase played in the opening event at Centurion Club earlier this month, is the next star set to sign up to the Saudi-backed invitational events.

He is expected to play in the second 54-hole, 48-man tournament - which has a prize fund of $25million (£20.4million) - in Portland, Oregon, next week but only a few days ago the 32-year-old, who will be suspended by the PGA Tour as a result of his decision, complained that questions on the topic at Brookline were throwing a 'black cloud' over the US Open.

Rory McIlroy has hit out at stars who have made U-turns by joining the LIV Golf Series

Rory McIlroy has hit out at stars who have made U-turns by joining the LIV Golf Series

In March former world No 1 Dustin Johnson stressed his full commitment to the PGA Tour only to perform a U-turn three months later and that sort of behaviour annoys McIlroy, who is on the tour's player advisory council.


Asked whether he was surprised by Koepka's decision, the Northern Irishman said: 'Am I surprised? Yes, because of what he said previously.

'I think that's why I'm surprised at a lot of these guys because they say one thing and then they do another and I don't understand.

'I don't know if that's for legal reasons or if they can't - I have no idea - but it's pretty duplicitous on their part to say one thing and then do another thing. In public and in private.'

Dustin Johnson is one of the players to have quit the PGA Tour to sign up for the controversial Saudi backed tournament
Brooks Koepka is among the latest high profile stars to have joined LIV Golf

Dustin Johnson (left) and Brooks Koepka are among the players who have joined the series

The new Saudi backed LIV Golf series has proven highly controversial since its 2021 inception

The new Saudi backed LIV Golf series has proven highly controversial since its 2021 inception 

McIlroy is playing in the Travelers' Championship in Connecticut this week, his fourth event in a row, and he admits it is taking its toll.

'I definitely feel like a little bit of fatigue setting in. I got a night in my own bed down in Florida on Monday night, which was really nice, but I came back up here yesterday and played the pro-am today,' he told a press conference at TPC River Highlands in Cromwell.

'I must say yesterday my head hit the pillow and I was out so (some) mental fatigue after sitting through a five-hour board meeting (with tour officials) and trying to get through some of these issues.

'Memorial's a very demanding golf course. Canada wasn't so demanding but when you get yourself in contention and you play a weekend like that then that takes quite a lot out of you and then you follow that up with a US Open.

McIlroy admits he has been battling fatigue following a busy and demanding schedule

McIlroy admits he has been battling fatigue following a busy and demanding schedule

'Mentally I'm totally fine but it will be nice to sort of rest up and get another good night's sleep.

'Four weeks in a row is pretty rare for me these days. I haven't played four in a row in a while and you start to remember why.'

World No 5Justin Thomas, who finished joint 37th at last week's US Open, withdrew on Wednesday with a back problem.

'Before the rumours start flying, I have decided to withdraw to treat and rest my back which I tweaked earlier this week,' Thomas wrote on Twitter.

'Just making sure I get it taken care of and ready for the rest of the PGA season as planned. Hate to be missing one of the best/my favourite events.'

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Rory McIlroy brands Brooks Koepka and fellow LIV Golf Series players 'duplicitous'

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