Rory McIlroy takes aim at 'duplicitous' Brooks Koepka as becomes latest to join LIV Golf Series

It's fair to say that Rory McIlroy is not impressed with the conduct of those joining LIV Golf.

Rory McIlroy has hit out at the golf stars who has signed up for the LIV Golf Series, branding them 'duplicitous' over their conduct.

Last week Brooks Koepka complained about questions being asked about LIV Golf were throwing a "black cloud" over the US Open. This week, week he has become the latest big name to join it.

He will be suspended from the PGA Tour and join the field for the second LIV Golf Series event in Portland Oregon where he will compete for a share of the $25million prize fund offered by Saudi backers who are accused of committed human rights atrocities.

Koepka follows the likes of Dustin Johnson who previously dismissed the notion they could join the controversial rival tour only to perform a meek U-turn later, and McIlroy says the behaviour of these players is even worse than their decisions.

Asked whether he was surprised by Koepka's decision before it was officially announced, 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."

LIV Golf confirmed later on Wednesday that Koepka had joined the breakaway tour and will compete at Pumpkin Ridge Golf Club in Portland.

"The addition of Brooks is yet another example of the incredible fields LIV Golf is assembling as we build momentum in our first season and look towards the future," said LIV Golf Chief executive officer and commissioner Greg Norman.

Greg Norman LIV

"There's no understating the impact that Brooks Koepka has had on the game of golf in the last five years. He carries a championship pedigree and record of success as one of the most elite players in the world."

Responding to Koepka's departure, PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan said: "I am disappointed that Brooks Koepka has left and has joined the LIV Golf series.

"I have not had a chance to talk to him about it, and I look forward to having a conversation with him, but I am not going to share any more than that at this point in time.

"Every player that has left, I have great admiration and respect for the contributions they have made to the PGA Tour. And I think a lot of players have had a hard time making that decision [to leave]."

Monahan, who hosted a meeting with as many as 100 PGA Tour members on Tuesday, announced a combined increased purse size of almost $60million [£48.9m] at eight PGA Tour tournaments in 2023.

He also confirmed the creation of a series of up to three international events to be played after the conclusion of the fall schedule for the top 50 players in the FedEx Cup.

Monahan added: "Let me be clear. I am not naive. If this is an arms race, and if the only weapons here are dollar bills, the PGA Tour can't compete with a foreign monarchy that is spending billions of dollars in an attempt to buy the game of golf.

Rory McIlroy says LIV Gold Invitational Series players attracted only by money

"We welcome good, healthy competition. The LIV-Saudi golf league is not that. It is an irrational threat and one not concerned with the return on investment for true growth of the game.

"On the PGA Tour, our members compete for the opportunity to add their names to history books and significant financial benefits without having to wrestle with any sort of moral ambiguity.

"My read on the situation is that this environment is unsettling and the players want to make certain that their Tour is doing everything it possibly can to grow and evolve in the manner that has got us to this point.

"We need to continue to be the ultimate platform for the best players in the world - a place they want to compete to prepare for the greatest championships in our game. The best competing against the best at historic venues with traditions and meanings and purpose.

"We are going down our path, and we are excited about what we have announced today and there is more exciting news to come. We are going to do it as a Tour, as a collective, and a group of members that are absolutely behind their Tour."

READ MORE: Greg Norman blasts PGA Tour for criticising Saudi-backed LIV series

Latest news