INZAI (JAPAN): Former Masters champion Hideki Matsuyama said he was "fully committed" to the PGA Tour amid media reports he had been offered a lucrative package to join the controversial Saudi-backed LIV Series.
Matsuyama, who defends his Zozo Championship title at home in Japan this week, said he had "never been prouder" of being a member of the PGA Tour, particularly during last month's Presidents Cup, which is organised by the U.S.-based circuit.
Players participating in LIV events have been suspended by the PGA Tour and were unable to play in the biennial Presidents Cup, which pits the United States against an International team minus Europe.
"Yeah, I'm a member of the PGA Tour. Never been prouder, especially at the Presidents Cup," Matsuyama told reporters on Tuesday when asked about his allegiance to the PGA Tour. "Yeah, I'm fully committed to the PGA Tour, I'm a member."
Matsuyama, speaking through an interpreter, added that he thought golfers competing on the Saudi Arabia-backed circuit should be awarded ranking points.
"Personally, I think they should be able to," Matsuyama added. "However, there's a procedure that they have to follow, too, with the ranking points." LIV Golf submitted an application to the Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR) board in July and earlier this month formed an alliance with the MENA Tour in a bid to fast-track its quest for ranking points.
The OWGR said it would review changes to the MENA Tour and make a decision once the review is complete. The Zozo Championship will be played at the Accordia Golf Narashino Country Club in Japan from Thursday to Sunday.