Norman channels Kerry Packer at inaugural LIV event
On the eve of the first LIV Golf event to be staged in Australia, Greg Norman came out with strong words as to why LIV is not only good for golf, but here to stay.
“Look, we are not going anywhere. LIV is here for a long, long period of time,” said the two-time major winner and holder of 20 PGA Tour titles.
Greg Norman (Credit: Anthony Powter)
Norman needed no reason to justify the huge amounts of funding and backing behind the LIV series and even went so far as to compare LIV Golf to the original World Series Cricket breakaway series that occurred back in the 1970′s.
“We have a product that the fans want. We have a product that the state government of South Australia want. Look what Kerry Packer did with cricket. God bless him: he sits on my shoulder every day. Trust me every day. He goes ‘Son, you’re doing a bloody good job’”
Norman, who never is short on self promotion, said the buzz around the inaugural event in Adelaide proved it was delivering “what fans want.”
“The message is getting out there, and the product is showing itself. We’re focused on the next 72 hours, and let’s see what happens after that.”
As we sit on the verge of something new for Australian golf, there is little question The Grange Golf Club and the city of Adelaide have turned it on.
Music belts out of the speakers on every tee box, green and vantage point location. Bean bags are abundant throughout the fairways if the fans want to take a leisurely break, soaking up the theatre and to have a cool beverage of your choice from the many bars in strategically placed positions.
Yes, its a village type atmosphere, I’d even go further and say a party atmosphere. It’s different from the traditional modes of what we are used to with Australian golf tournaments. Gone are the ubiqitious and outdated ‘quiet’ banners that the volunteers frantically wave as golfers take their backswing.
Norman labels LIV as a product that ‘corporations and television want’ and that ‘the message is getting out there and the product is showing itself.”
The question was asked at today’s press conference as to the prospect of a second LIV event in Australia. Norman said his phone was “ringing off the hook” with venues expressing interest, but he couldn’t confirm if or when that might come to fruition.
Take nothing away from Norman’s ability to promote and showcase a tournament. Adelaide, and at present golf in Australia, is alive and kicking. Something that’s been missing here for some time.