LIV Golf backer and PIF governor refuses to testify in lawsuit against PGA Tour

Yasir Al-Rumayyan insists no court in the United States has jurisdiction over him or the Public Investment Fund in their case against the PGA Tour.

Matt Chivers's picture
Sat, 5 Nov 2022
LIV Golf boss and PIF governor refuses to testify in lawsuit against PGA Tour

Governor of the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia Yasir Al-Rumayyan has refused to testify or provide documents in the lawsuit against the PGA Tour.

As reported by Bloomberg, Al-Rumayyan insisted that "there is no court in the United States with jurisdiction" over him and the Public Investment fund which is the main source of funding for the LIV Golf Tour.

The PGA Tour is seeking the testimony of Al-Rumayyan and documents from the PIF. The Tour's lawyers reported that the first request for a testimony had been accepted, but things have now changed.

According to the lawyers, Al-Rumayyan has "flatly objected to the Tour's subpoenas, refused to produce a single responsive document and declined to appear for deposition."

Court papers say that he claims he and the PIF are immune to discovery requests from US courts and deny they "are relevant to LIV's lawsuit in any way."

After the PGA Tour suspended players after moving to the Saudi-backed series, 11 golfers filed an antitrust lawsuit against the Tour. Only three players remain in the lawsuit, but LIV Golf has now attached itself.

The amended complaint at the end of August said that LIV Golf is seeking "punitive damages against the PGA Tour for its tortious interference with LIV Golf’s prospective business relationships."

At the start of September, Judge Beth L. Freeman ruled that portions of LIV Golf player contracts will be revealed in the antitrust case filed against the PGA Tour.

Then in October, the Tour filed a federal civil lawsuit against the PIF and Al-Rumayyan. The Tour's attorneys have filed 50 exhibits along with a motion to compel, asking the court to make the opposing party take some action. 

This also came after the Tour countersued the breakaway series, rejecting claims of antitrust violations that were filed against them in August.

The first LIV Golf event took place in June when the likes of Phil Mickelson and Dustin Johnson played. Since then, Bryson DeChambeau, Brooks Koepka, Cameron Smith and Patrick Reed have also made the controversial switch.