PGA Australia denies European Tour merger rumours

It seems the PGA Tour of Australasia ain’t moving – anywhere – despite rumours to the contrary.

The Tour has moved quickly to dismiss reports in the British press suggesting the Tour was considering a merger with the powerful European Tour, the second biggest golf tour in the world.

PGA Australia PGA Australia

That’s not to suggest there may be more “co-sanctioned” events between the two tours.

Indeed PGA chief commercial officer Steve Ayles has confirmed the Australian body was in regular talks with “the European and other tours” about the possibility of jointly running several events.

Yet Ayles stipulated the word ‘merger’ was definitely not in discussion.

“We are in constant contact with several tours, but there has been no mention of mergers at all,” Ayles said.

“We make no secret of the fact that we would consider potential co-sanctioning agreements of the events that we run.”

“But that’s a far cry from the wording in that article.”

According to respected golf writer Derek Lawrenson of London’s The Daily Mail, negotiations had reached an advanced stage with the PGA of Australia for some sort of merger.

“Whether this means an arrangement similar to that with the Sunshine Tour in South Africa – where seven events are co-sanctioned – or something more formal has yet to be determined,” Lawrenson wrote.

The two tours have co-sanctioned several events in recent years, notably the rich Perth International in October, 2014.

Lawrenson did reveal that European Tour members had been given an outline of plans at the recent Qatar Masters.