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Ian Poulter pushes back against Rory McIlroy's claims that he felt 'betrayed' by the LIV defectors

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Ian Poulter pushes back against Rory McIlroy's claims that he felt 'betrayed' by the LIV defectors

‘I don’t know where that comment came from’: Ian Poulter risks further civil war between Europe’s Ryder Cup hopefuls as he pushes back against Rory McIlroy’s claims he felt ‘betrayed’ by LIV defectors

  • Ian Poulter is one of a number of European players who have turned away from the LIV tour
  • The move threatens their future Ryder Cup prospects next year and beyond
  • Rory McIlroy said in an interview that he felt betrayed by those who moved

Ian Poulter has shrugged off Rory McIlroy’s claims he felt ‘betrayed’ by Ryder Cup teammates who turned their backs on the LIV series.

McIlroy was critical in an interview this week of his former European teammates, including Poulter, Lee Westwood, Graeme McDowell and Sergio Garcia, after they jeopardized their futures in the biennial match by cashing in on Saudi-backed circuit.

While some of those players, including Poulter, still hold out hope of being forced back into the set-up through legal maneuvers, McIlroy, as LIV’s staunchest critic, told the Guardian : ‘I think it was the first time in my life that I felt betrayed, in a way. It was an unfamiliar feeling to me. You build bonds with these people through Ryder Cups and other things.’

Ian Poulter has pushed back against Rory McIlroy's claims that he felt betrayed by the players

Ian Poulter has pushed back against Rory McIlroy’s claims that he felt betrayed by the players

Poulter, speaking ahead of LIV’s season finale in Miami, dismissed the suggestion, saying: ‘A betrayal? We can still qualify for the team as far as I know.

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‘Look, my Ryder Cup commitment I think is ahead of me. I don’t think that should be discussed. I’ve always wanted to play Ryder Cups and played with more passion than anyone I’ve ever seen play a Ryder Cup.

‘You know, I don’t know where that comment actually came from, to be honest.’

McIlroy said in an interview this week that he felt betrayed by those who defected from the LIV Tour

McIlroy said in an interview this week that he felt betrayed by those who defected from the LIV Tour

The inaugural LIV season concludes with their $50million (£43m) team championships this weekend at Trump National Doral, taking place against the backdrop of a raging civil war in the sport. With McIlroy’s many broadsides of late, there was criticism last week of Phil Mickelson’s claim that the LIV was ‘trending up’ while the PGA Tour was ‘trending down’.

When confronted about those comments Wednesday, Mickelson appeared to backtrack. He told a press conference in Miami: ‘Maybe I shouldn’t have said things like that, I don’t know, but I just look at LIV Golf and where we are now compared to where we were six, seven months ago. when people say it’s dead in the water.

‘We’ve overcome that, and here we are now, a force in the game that won’t go away, with players of this calibre. It’s pretty remarkable how far LIV Golf has come in the last six, seven months. I don’t think anyone could disagree with that.’

Poulter (R) has enjoyed a storied history with Europe at the Ryder Cup and hopes to play his part again

Poulter (R) has enjoyed a storied history with Europe at the Ryder Cup and hopes to play his part again

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