Cameron Smith, Joaquin Niemann and Harold Varner III part of SIX new golfers joining LIV Golf Tour
Six new big name golfers will join the field for LIV Golf’s fourth event of the year, the LIV Golf Invitational Boston, teeing off 2-4 September at The International.
The field includes six players making their LIV Golf debuts, including world No. 2 and 2022 Open Champion Cameron Smith, world No. 19 and top Chilean golfer Joaquin Niemann, Harold Varner III (No. 46), Cameron Tringale (No. 55), Marc Leishman (No. 62) and India’s top-ranked pro Anirban Lahiri (No. 92) who will join the field of 48 competing in Massachusetts. Also making his first LIV Golf appearance is two-time Masters champion and former world No. 2 player Bubba Watson, who will debut as a non-playing captain and will make on-air contributions to live event coverage.
As the world’s No. 2 golfer, Smith becomes the highest-ranked player to compete in a LIV Golf event. Winner of the 2022 Open Championship in July at St Andrews, the 150th playing of golf’s oldest major, the Australian has 8 professional wins including the Players Championship earlier this year. The 29-year-old joins the list of LIV golfers who have met the minimum playing eligibility requirements for the World Golf Hall of Fame, though he must wait another 16 years until the minimum age requirement of 45 before official consideration. Smith has amassed 48 additional top-10 finishes and is a consistent contender in the majors, including finishing T-4th at the 2015 U.S. Open – his first major start – and earning four top-10 finishes at the Masters (T-5th 2018, T-2nd 2020, T-10th 2021, T-3rd 2022). A two-time Australian PGA Championship winner (2017-2018), Smith has also represented his home country in international team competitions including the 2018 World Cup, the 2019 Presidents Cup and the Tokyo Olympics.
Chile’s top professional golfer, the 23-year-old Niemann jumped onto the global golf scene as a teenager. As the World Amateur Golf Rankings’ No. 1 player for 44 weeks between 2017-2018, he earned victories against top international players on the Chilean Tour before turning pro in April 2018. The current world No. 19 golfer has two professional wins, 26 top-10 finishes, and represented Chile as part of the International Team in the 2019 Presidents Cup and the Tokyo Olympics.
Varner III, currently 46th in the world, is a two-time winner as a pro including the 2015 Australian PGA Championship and the 2022 PIF Saudi International presented by Softbank Investment Partners. The memorable Asian Tour event featured a thrilling finish, where Varner sunk a 92-foot eagle putt on the 18th hole to defeat fellow LIV Golf competitor Bubba Watson by 1 stroke. Consistently a fan favorite, Varner has 24 top-10 finishes over his professional career, which began in 2012 following a successful collegiate career at East Carolina University where he earned honors as Conference USA Player of the Year.
The Boston field will now showcase seven No. 1-ranked players within their respective countries, 12 major champions with a combined 22 majors, and four former world No. 1 players. The global field has 13 Olympians, represents 14 different countries, features 20 players with 10 or more professional wins and includes current and future stars of the game who have earned NCAA National Championships and US Amateur Championships among their accomplishments. Players will compete in golf’s most exciting new format for $25 million and the chance to become LIV Golf’s fourth individual and team champions and earn points towards LIV Golf’s season-long individual competition.
Greg Norman, CEO and Commissioner of LIV Golf, said: “LIV Golf is showing the world that our truly global league is attracting the world’s best players and will grow the game into the future for the next generation,”
“The best and the brightest continue to embrace the excitement and energy of LIV Golf and what we’re building: a tangible league for team golf that will connect with new audiences all over the globe. We can’t wait to tee off this week at The International and deliver another memorable event experience for fans.”
The 48-man field will play across 12 teams of four players each. Teams will be announced in the coming days.
The LIV Golf Invitational Boston offers opportunities for golfers from around the world including the Asian Tour, DP World Tour, PGA Tour, Sunshine Tour, PGA Tour of Australasia and Japan Golf Tour, as well as leading players from The International Series, which launched in Thailand in March, and top finishers from the LIV Golf Invitational Series. LIV Golf will continue to reward players that compete and perform well in LIV events, with a broad spectrum of exemption categories designed to ensure it delivers new opportunities for international golfers, as well as pathways for amateurs and the next generation of leading players, into elite professional golf.
The LIV Golf Invitational Series launched June 9 to a worldwide audience showcasing its new, innovative format with 12 teams, 48 players, shotgun starts and no cut. Building on LIV Golf’s successful start and the incredible feedback received from players and fans, it was announced on July 27 that the LIV Golf League will officially launch in 2023 with 12 established team franchises competing in a 14-tournament schedule. The full slate of events will be announced at a later date and is expected to expand LIV Golf’s global footprint across North and Latin Americas, Asia, Australia, the Middle East and Europe.