Cam Smith is among the PGA players who have reportedly defected to LIV Golf


CameronSmithWorld No. 2 and 2022 Open Champion, is reportedly part of a new group of PGA Tour Players who want to switch to LIV Golf.

According to the report, Marc Leishman, Harold Varner III, Joaquin Niemann, Anirban Lahiri and Cameron Tringale are also set to join the new circuit ESPN on Saturday. According to the report, Mito Pereira is also considering joining LIV.

Smith would be the highest-ranking player to leave the PGA Tour for LIV Golf. The 29-year-old Australian has won six PGA Tour events as well as The Players in March.

Meanwhile, LIV Golf has joined the antitrust lawsuit against the PGA Tour in an expanded lawsuit in which four players have their names removed.

That leaves seven players — primarily Phil Mickelson and Bryson DeChambeau — along with LIV Golf as plaintiffs in the lawsuit. The four who have retired their names are Carlos Ortiz, Abraham Ancer, Pat Perez and Jason Kokrak.

The amended lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court in Northern California Friday afternoon. Three players remaining in the lawsuit — Matt Jones, Talor Gooch and Hudson Swafford — previously applied for an injunction to play in the FedEx Cup playoffs.

The judge denied her request two weeks ago.

The lawsuit alleges the PGA Tour used monopoly power to stifle competition and wrongly suspended players.

LIV Golf CEO Greg Norman said the league will fully support players with any legal action they take. LIV Golf, backed by the Saudi Arabian sovereign wealth fund, is now directly involved.

Earlier this week, the PGA made its boldest response to LIV yet, unveiling a plan for the top players to commit to a 20-tournament schedule in which they will compete up to 17 times for average purses of $20 million.

Related: Top PGA Tour players commit to 20 big money events

“This is not a renegade group trying to usurp the power of the PGA Tour,” he said Rory McIlroy, a player director on the tour board. “It’s, ‘OK, how can we make this tour better for everyone who’s going to play on it now and everyone who’s going to play on the PGA Tour in the future.'”

Of the sweeping changes outlined by PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan, the most significant was what will happen from a private meeting from 23 top players last week: a new model that guarantees the best play in the same tournaments more often.

Veteran golfer Lee Westwood reacted sharply to the news, saying the PGA changes were simply an attempt to “copy” LIV Golf.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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