Will LIV Golf Reign Supreme at the 2024 PGA Championship?

The professional golf world will descend on Louisville, Kentucky the week of May 13th – 19th as the PGA Championship returns to Valhalla Golf Club.  A Jack Nicklaus designed course, this will be Valhalla’s fourth time playing host to the PGA Championship with the last coming in 2014 when Rory McIlroy took home the famed Wanamaker trophy.  Of course, McIlroy and the other top players on the PGA Tour are sure to factor into the Sunday leaderboard but not to be overlooked will be the strong contingent of LIV Golf players that have either qualified for or received an invitation to the season’s second major championship.

This article will highlight players from the controversial LIV Golf tour that are set to participate in the 2024 PGA Championship at Valhalla and those who may yet earn an invitation.


LIV Golfers Currently in the 2024 PGA Championship

The list of LIV Golf players currently slated to compete in the 2024 PGA Championship at Valhalla Golf Club includes: Jon Rahm, Brooks Koepka, Dustin Johnson, Cameron Smith, Bryson DeChambeau, Phil Mickelson, Martin Kaymer, Tyrrell Hatton, and Joaquin Niemann.

2024 PGA Championship


While this list is certainly full of A-List golf superstars, including Koepka who won last year’s PGA Championship at Oak Hill Country Club, it’s also notable for the names that it does not include.  One of the most contentious and hotly debated issues surrounding the LIV Golf tour is its exclusion from the Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR) system. This lack of recognition has had massive implications for pro golf, particularly concerning player eligibility for the major championships including the PGA Championship, which traditionally rely on world rankings to determine qualifying and seeding.  With each passing week, LIV Golf players are dropping in the world rankings as their past performance and qualifications on the PGA Tour and elsewhere fade further into the background.  Prominent names currently not qualified for the 2024 PGA Championship include:  Sergio Garcia, Talor Gooch, Louis Oosthuizen, Abraham Ancer, Patrick Reed, and Bubba Watson.


Many of the LIV players that have qualified for the 2024 major championships have done so as a result of past wins that earned them standing exemptions into these events.  Let’s take a closer look at the LIV Players currently in the 2024 PGA Championship field:


Jon Rahm: Having established himself as one of the premier talents in golf since turning professional in 2016, Rahm has multiple PGA Tour and European Tour victories, including a major win at the 2021 U.S. Open at Torrey Pines and the 2023 Masters.  His departure for LIV Golf at the start of the 2024 season was felt like an earthquake in professional golf. Rahm’s ability to perform under pressure, combined with his well-rounded game, makes him a formidable competitor in any major championship.


Brooks Koepka:  Koepka, the defending PGA Champion, is known for playing his best golf in the major championships. With five major titles to his name, including two U.S. Opens (2017, 2018) and three PGA Championships (2018, 2019, 2023), Koepka’s physicality and mental toughness have defined his career. His approach prioritizes majors, a strategy that has paid off with consistent success on golf’s biggest stages.


Dustin Johnson:  One of just four golfers ever to spend more than 100 weeks as the world #1, Johnson is one of the most gifted athletes to everplay the game.  With a PGA Tour career that includes a win at the 2016 U.S. Open and the 2020 Masters Tournament. Johnson’s remarkable driving distance combined with clutch short game make him a perennial contender and always a threat to perform at majors.


Cameron Smith: One of the best putters in the world, Smith’s major breakthrough came with his victory at the 150th Open Championship at St. Andrews in 2022. Known for his laid-back demeanor and calm under pressure, Smith seems to always find a way to be on Sunday leaderboards in majors


Bryson DeChambeau: Known as “The Scientist” for his analytical approach to golf, DeChambeau is a polarizing figure that has revolutionized the sport with his emphasis on distance. Winning the 2020 U.S. Open, DeChambeau’s unconventional methods and equipment choices have made him one of the most talked-about players in the game.


Phil Mickelson: A six-time major championship winner, including three Masters titles, Mickelson’s creativity and risk-taking have endeared him to fans worldwide in spite of his highly controversial maneuvers over the last few years.  Mickelson was at the heart of the initial LIV Golf disruptions that turned the world of professional golf on its head just a few years ago. His win at the 2021 PGA Championship at age 50 made him the oldest major champion in history.


Martin Kaymer:  With two major championships under his belt, the 2010 PGA Championship and the 2014 U.S. Open, Kaymer has cooled off in recent years but his resume shows that he’s more than capable of performing at golf’s biggest events.


Tyrrell Hatton: Known for his fiery temperament and competitive spirit, Hatton has multiple European Tour wins and has been a consistent performer in the majors. Hatton’s ability to navigate tough courses and withstand adverse conditions have made him a formidable player on both the European and PGA Tours.


Joaquin Niemann: With a victory at The Greenbrier in 2019, Niemann quickly established himself on the PGA Tour. Even with his defection to LIV Golf, Niemann is without a doubt one of the most talented young players in golf and he will be a force in majors for years to come.  Niemann is currently No. 76 in the OWGR due to not gaining any points from LIV events but he recently received a special invitation from the PGA to compete in the 2024 PGA Championship.


Will LIV Golf Spoil The PGA Championship Party

LIV Golf player


Time will tell if another LIV Golf player can follow up Brooks Koepka’s 2023 performance and capture the Wanamaker trophy again in 2024.  While less and less LIV players are qualifying for majors as their Official World Golf Ranking status continues to slide, they still have plenty of firepower to play the role of spoiler at Valhalla Golf Club in mid May.

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