Phil Mickelson believes organisers of the four men’s majors will change their qualifying criteria if the Official Golf World Ranking continues refusing to acknowledge the LIV Golf League.
Six-time major winner Mickelson revisited the ranking points row in Singapore this week, where the fifth LIV Golf event of the 2023 season is due to take place at Sentosa Golf Club.
“We have to come up with a qualifying mechanism that is inclusive, and if the World Golf Ranking isn’t going to be inclusive, then they have to find another way,” Mickelson said.
“They’re going to have to find a way to get the best LIV players in their field if they want to have the best field in golf and be really what a major championship is about.”
Most of the majors rely on the OWGR system to allocate places, which is likely to see the number of LIV Golf players taking part decline – unless the criteria change.
Mickelson was one of the LIV Golf stars to shine at the Masters earlier this month, finishing in a tie for second with Brooks Koepka, who is also part of the breakaway circuit.
“If you’re one of the majors, you’re not looking at, ‘We should keep these guys out’,” the 52-year-old added.
“You’re saying to yourself, ‘We want to have the best field, and these guys added a lot to the Masters. How do we get them included?’
“If the World Golf Rankings doesn’t find a way to be inclusive, then the majors will just find another way to include LIV because it’s no longer a credible way.
“So it will all iron itself out for the simple reason that it’s in the best interest of everybody, especially the tournaments, the majors, to have the best players.”
In lieu of a solution, Bubba Watson suggested scrapping ranking points and relying on the order of merit from each tour to allocate major spots.
“Forget World Ranking points. Just who is the best in your tour and our league and go from there. It’s simple math,” he said.
“Forget about who plays at what tournament, this tournament is better than that tournament – no. Your tour, your league, call it a day and at those places play against each other four times a year.”
Watson is seeking more success in Singapore this weekend, having seen his RangeGoats win the team competition at last week’s LIV Golf League event in Adelaide.
England’s Ian Poulter, a former winner at Sentosa, will be hoping to bounce back from his 26th place finish in Australia.