Tiger Woods discovers fate after PGA Tour has vote on his future in golf

Tiger Woods discovers fate after PGA Tour has vote on his future in golf

The PGA Tour Policy Board has green-lit a new “Lifetime Achievement exemption category” which was designed for golfing legend Tiger Woods. The chance enables Woods to participate in all eight signature tournaments of the tour for the rest of his career, each of which has substantial prize money and limited fields.

These premier events sparked hot debate amongst fans during the initial tenure of the PGA Tour’s new scheme. The argument mostly revolved around which competitors are granted permission to play in these primary championships.

Though tournament sponsors can assign four exemptions to specific members of the PGA Tour, more often than not, this privilege falls into the hands of a repeated selection of players. As this week hosts the final signature event of the season, the Travelers Championship, extensive revisions to polish the system’s flaws are anticipated in the upcoming months.

The most impactful change is recognised as Woods’ special waiver, which will be activated in 2025. It will mean he is welcome in golf’s biggest events regardless of his form for the rest of his career. 

Woods’ unparalleled achievements stand as a testament to a magnificent career. At 48-years-old, he holds an impressive collection of 82 championship titles and has grossed over $120 million in his lifetime on-course earnings. The Policy Board will now give due recognition and honour to these accomplishments through the new exemption. 

Despite the fact that no tournament sponsors would have rejected Woods if he had shown interest in participating, he was not automatically eligible to compete. Due to his limited time on the course over the past few years and scores that did not meet qualifying standards, the golfing legend has had to utilise one of the four exemptions granted to sponsors.

Now that Woods will receive his own exemption to participate in any signature event of his choice next year, sponsors will be able to reward other players who they believe deserve a spot in the field. “These exemptions are intended to capture players who are important to the tournament sponsor but who are not otherwise qualified,” explained the GREENSHEET newsletter.

“To maximise these spots for the membership and to provide optimal flexibility for the tournament sponsor, the PAC supported adding an additional sponsor exemption recognising Tiger Woods in his own category as a player who has reached an exceptional lifetime achievement threshold of 80+ career wins.”

The demand for exemptions is set to skyrocket next year, following the Policy Board’s approval of a proposal ensuring each Signature Event will have a minimum of 72 players. Despite this number often being met by qualifying golfers this season, dropouts led to some fields shrinking to 68-70 players. This change will also come into effect in 2025.