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Rory McIlroy and Bryson DeChambeau advocate for uniting golf

DORAL, Fla. — Rory McIlroy and Bryson DeChambeau will be in the same location next week as they go to Augusta National for the Masters.

DORAL, Fla. — Next week, Rory McIlroy and Bryson DeChambeau will be at Augusta National for the Masters.

This week, they are expressing the same views, although they belong to different parts of the golf world.

Before the year’s first major, McIlroy and DeChambeau, along with other PGA Tour and LIV Golf League players, emphasized the need for the game to come together again, warning that failure to do so would further reduce its fanbase.

McIlroy pointed out that TV ratings for the PGA Tour have dropped by 20% this year, and similarly, LIV's viewership is not impressive. He attributed this to the ongoing conflicts, which have resulted in viewer fatigue and disinterest in men’s professional golf.

DeChambeau emphasized the urgency for top officials to find a solution quickly, as the current situation is unsustainable.

Before heading to the first major of the season, 43 golfers — 30 from the PGA Tour and 13 from LIV — are competing in the Valero Open in San Antonio and the LIV Golf League’s event near Miami.

At the majors and events like the Ryder Cup, players from the PGA Tour and LIV compete together, but this unity is absent elsewhere due to the divide caused by LIV attracting players away.

Efforts to reunite the game have been ongoing for months, including discussions since the PGA Tour's agreement with Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund last June, but the divide persists.

Jon Rahm believes there is space for both sides and envisions an improved golf product that can elevate the sport globally, attracting more fans.

LIV's ratings have been poor. In February, LIV Golf Mayakoba drew 432,000 viewers on the CW Network, whereas a rerun of a PGA Tour round from Pebble Beach had 1.21 million viewers on CBS on the same day.

McIlroy mentioned that viewership numbers for the three majors other than the Masters will illustrate the impact of the game’s division, emphasizing the exceptional status of Augusta National in comparison to other tournaments.

Rory McIlroy said that if the performance and the best players in the world are present, it may be necessary to reunite the golf world. However, if the performance is not as good, it still may be important to bring everyone together because people are losing interest in the game and not watching the four major championships.

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