Three LIV Golf rebels set to tee up in Genesis Scottish Open after ban appeal

Three LIV Golf players, including Ian Poulter, are set to tee up in this week’s Genesis Scottish Open despite having been banned from the event in East Lothian.

Ian Poulter the LIV Golf Invitational - Portland at Pumpkin Ridge Golf Club in North Plains, Oregon. Picture: Steve Dykes/Getty Images.
Ian Poulter the LIV Golf Invitational - Portland at Pumpkin Ridge Golf Club in North Plains, Oregon. Picture: Steve Dykes/Getty Images.

The suspensions imposed on Poulter, Spaniard Adrian Otaegui and South African Justin Harding have been “temporarily stayed”, according to the DP World Tour, pending appeals.

As a result, the field for the $8 million Rolex Series event, which starts at The Renaissance Club on Thursday, will be increased from 156 players.

The door has been opened to Poulter, Otaegui and Harding, who were among the DP World Tour players to tee up in the first two LIV Golf events without securing an official release, following a hearing before HHJ Sycamore CBE, who had been appointed by Sport Resolutions (UK).

In a statement issued at the halfway stage of the JP McManus Pro Am at Adare Manor, DP World Tour chief executive Keith Pelley said: “Out of respect for JP and Noreen McManus, their wonderful pro-am and the outstanding fund-raising they undertake on behalf of charities in the west of Ireland, I will not be giving a detailed response on this matter right now.

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“I will simply say we are disappointed by the outcome of today’s hearing, but will abide by the decision. It is important to remember, however, this is only a stay of the sanctions imposed, pending the hearing of the players’ appeal as to whether those sanctions were appropriate.

“The make-up of the field for the Genesis Scottish Open will be advised in due course, but based on this decision the field size will increase beyond 156. We will make further comment on this in due course, but not during our time at Adare Manor.”

Speaking to the BBC, Ryder Cup talisman Poulter defended his decision to try and secure a spot in the Scottish Open, having been a regular supporter of the event over the years.

"My commitment to the European Tour has been there since day one," he said. "And it's still there today. I'm proud of playing so often, when it was to the detriment of world ranking points and FedEx Cup points I could have earned playing more in America.

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"I feel disappointed, and offended that I've been suspended from playing golf on a Tour that I've played for 24 years. I'm waiting to hear a panel's review, hopefully in the next 24 hours, to see if I am going to be allowed to play in Scotland.

"I believe my management team have taken it to an independent panel to review it, but I don't know all the nuts and bolts - I play the golf, and I leave that stuff to my management.

Hopefully we can get the ban lifted."

As well as being banned from the Scottish Open, the DP World Tour rebels who played the opening event were hit with £100,000 fines.

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"I've taken that action by myself, because I want to play this week," said Poulter. "If people want to come in on the back of that, then fine. But I'm fighting for my right to play golf.

"We didn't know what the consequences of playing for LIV would be. We knew there would be some form of action, but it was never spelled out to us, and I feel the action they have taken is too severe.

"I've been allowed to play in Japan, in Korea, all over the world in fact, without any sanctions. I even missed Wentworth one year to play Colonial. That was OK. But this isn't.

"Because of my commitment to golf I've missed seeing my kids grow up, take their first steps, and many other family moments.

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"Now I've got the chance to spend a lot more time at home, and earn a lot of money - and at 46, the game isn't getting easier, so why wouldn't I take it?"

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