Golf superstar Annika SÃ¶renstam says she’s watching the stunning developments in men’s professional golf closely to see how they might affect the women’s sport. But that it’s too soon to see “the big picture.”
The sport has been upended in the last year or so since the new Saudi-backed LIV Tour began luring players away from the US-based PGA Tour with the promise of stratospheric paychecks.
After battling head-to-head â in court and behind-the-scenes â now the two tours have agreed to merge, casting the future of the game into uncharted territory.
So far, the rivalry-turned-partnership has only directly affected the men’s game. But such a seismic shift will surely have knock-on effects for women’s golf.
Speaking to Page Six at the Cannes Lions festival in France, SÃ¶renstam, one of the world’s most successful female golfers and an ambassador for the women’s game told Page Six she thinks it’s too soon to tell how it’ll impact female players.
“Like many people, I’m on the sidelines just watching to see what the whole big picture is,” she told us at Stagwell Global’s Sports Beach complex.
But she said she’s cautiously optimistic that the shakeup can benefit pros of both genders, now that the face-off between the two giants, LIV and the PGA, seems to be moving towards a truce.
“There is friction between players, there’s friction between partners, there’s friction between tours. But now they’re starting to… get rid of these lawsuits,” she said.
She also said that, tumult aside, “It’s great to see more people getting involved in the game, which obviously I’m an advocate for, it’s great to see more money into the game, more opportunities, maybe more courses, get young kids part of the game, so hopefully it will have a nice outcome.”
The ten-time major winner was in the French city to promote her ANNIKA Foundation which helps support young women in golf.
Also at Sports Beach, Page Six staffers chatted with NBA star Tony Parker and magazines maven Joanna Coles.
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