Northern Irish golfer Rory McIlroy has resigned from his role as a player director on the PGA Tour policy board, the organization announced in a statement on Tuesday.
“Citing personal and professional commitments, Rory McIlroy has notified the PGA Tour policy board that he is resigning his position as a player director,” a PGA Tour statement read.
McIlroy served on the board for two years after spending the previous three years as a member of the player advisory council.
The decision by the world number No. 2 golfer comes amidst ongoing discussions to finalize the proposed agreement involving the PGA Tour, Saudi’s Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF) and the DP World Tour (formerly known as the European Tour) which sent reverberations around the golf world when it was announced on June 6.
All three organizations signed a deal to combine PIF’s golf-related commercial businesses and rights – including the Saudi-backed LIV Golf series – with the commercial businesses and rights of the PGA Tour and DP World Tour into a new, collectively owned, for-profit entity.
A day after the shock announcement in June, McIlroy said he had “mixed emotions” about the proposed partnership. The 34-year-old has been a fierce critic of LIV Golf, the Saudi breakaway league.
But on Tuesday, before his resignation was announced, McIlroy was complimentary on the future of golf.
“The professional game has never been stronger or healthier from a financial standpoint,” McIlroy told reporters at a press conference on Tuesday ahead of week’s DP World Tour Championship in Dubai.
“There has never been a better time to be a professional golfer,” he added.
When asked about the progress of the proposed agreement to combine the three professional golf entities, McIlroy said: “No one on the outside has any details. Loose lips sink ships, so we are trying to keep it tight and within walls. I’m sure when there’s news to tell, it will be told.”
McIlroy also hinted at the challenges around his player director role, saying it was “not what I signed for whenever I went on the board.”
“But yeah, the game of professional golf has been in flux for the last two years. Again, the overall game I think is in really good shape. But everyone focuses on this top level because it is what it is, and it’s an entertainment product and it’s a show, but the faster that it gets rectified, I think the better for everyone.”
McIlroy’s term was due to expire at the end of 2024. According to the “PGA TOUR Tournament Regulations, whenever the office of any player director becomes vacant due to resignation, the remaining player directors elect a successor to serve his unexpired term.”