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Only 16 percent of PGA fans watched first Saudi Golf League event: poll

Phil Mickelson of the United States reacts to the crowd after putting on the 15th green during the final round of the inaugural LIV Golf Invitational at the Centurion Club in St Albans, England, Saturday, June 11, 2022. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)

A new poll found that less than a quarter of PGA fans tuned into the first LIV Golf event in London last month as pro golfers who have joined the league face increasing scrutiny for joining.

A total of 16 percent of PGA Tour fans said they watched the event last month, according to a new Morning Consult poll.

The same poll found about 4 in 5 PGA Tour fans indicated they want to watch the world’s best players, citing it as their top priority when deciding which events to watch on television or on streaming.

Of the respondents, 47 percent said tournaments being easy to watch was also a top priority, while just 23 percent said having a “good prize for the winners” was a driving factor in their interest.

The first LIV event was streamed online, and the Saudi-funded league has not released official audience figures. Some estimates from media and viewership analysts have suggested viewership was less than 100,000 during a given round.

The LIV has lured some of professional golf’s top names away from the PGA Tour in recent months, including stars of the game like Phil Mickelson, Brooks Koepka, Bryson DeChambeau and Dustin Johnson.

The Morning Consult poll was conducted between June 15 and 17, among a sample of 2,210 adults. It had a margin of error of 2 percentage points.

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