News APP

NewsApp (Free)

Read news as it happens
Download NewsApp

Available on  gplay

Rediff.com  » Sports » Furious McEnroe says 'PGA were total hypocrites'

Furious McEnroe says 'PGA were total hypocrites'

June 29, 2023 10:19 IST
Get Rediff News in your Inbox:

'I wouldn't encourage it personally, the Saudi thing. I'm not surprised that tennis is being thrown into the mix after what we saw in golf.'

John McEnroe

IMAGE: The 64-year-old John McEnroe added that he was not surprised by Saudi interest in a possible investment in tennis, as the country has been spending heavily in other sports. Photograph: Brett Hemmings/Getty Images

Seven-time Grand Slam singles champion John McEnroe said tennis should not seek Saudi investment and called golf's PGA Tour hypocritical after it reached an agreement with the country's sovereign wealth fund.

 

Earlier in June, the PGA Tour, DP World Tour and rival LIV circuit, which previously engaged in a bitter fight that divided golf, announced a merger to form a unified commercial entity.

"It looked to me like the PGA were total hypocrites when they cut a deal after they've been fighting them," the three-time Wimbledon champion said to ESPN on Wednesday.

The chairman of tennis's ATP Tour, Andrea Gaudenzi, told the Financial Times last week he has held discussions with Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund (PIF) and other potential investors on projects including infrastructure, events and technology investment.

Critics have accused Saudi Arabia of using the PIF to engage in "sportwashing" in the face of heavy criticism of the country's human rights record.

The 64-year-old McEnroe added that he was not surprised by Saudi interest in a possible investment in tennis, as the country has been spending heavily in other sports.

"What about (Cristiano) Ronaldo? He's being paid a couple hundred million a year. They have been buying players in other sports, brought boxing fights, you name it," he said.

"I wouldn't encourage it personally, the Saudi thing. I'm not surprised that tennis is being thrown into the mix after what we saw in golf.

"At the same time the people that are complaining about it, a lot of the people are hypocrites because our government does business with things along with tons of other hedge funds, wealth funds, down the list, people that have dealings."

Australian Open chief Craig Tiley believes any Saudi Arabian investment in tennis would not have the same impact as in golf.

Media reports say the country is bidding to host this year's ATP Next Gen Finals and world number one Carlos Alcaraz said earlier this week he would be open to competing there.

Get Rediff News in your Inbox:
Source: REUTERS
© Copyright 2024 Reuters Limited. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of Reuters content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Reuters. Reuters shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

England's Tour Of India 2024

England's Tour Of India 2024