Tyrrell Hatton commits to Dubai Desert Classic, thwarting LIV Golf rumors for now

Tyrrell Hatton commits to Dubai Desert Classic, thwarting LIV Golf rumors for now

On the heels of Jon Rahm joining LIV Golf, rumors swirled of other notable players converging on the Saudi-backed circuit, too.

One of those players happened to be Englishman Tyrrell Hatton, currently the 12th-ranked player in the world. But instead of going to LIV Golf, Hatton has decided to stay on the DP World Tour and PGA Tour, at least for now.

Hatton, a Ryder Cup star, has committed to playing in the Dubai Desert Classic in mid-January, a Rolex Series event on the DP World Tour.

Rolex Series events are the five most prestigious events on the DP World Tour, which has drawn comparisons to the PGA Tour’s Signature Events.

Others who have committed to the 2024 Dubai Desert Classic include fellow Englishman Tommy Fleetwood, 2023 Champion Golfer of the Year Brian Harman, and Cameron Young, a rising star on the PGA Tour.

The Dubai Desert Classic is perhaps the biggest tournament in the world during the first month of the year. It usually draws some of the world’s best players.

Tiger Woods used to play in this event routinely during his prime, as he won in Dubai in 2006 and 2008. Other past champions include Sergio Garcia, Bryson DeChambeau, Ernie Els, and Fred Couples.

Rory McIlroy won last year’s iteration, his third time winning the Dubai Desert Classic. He has again committed to playing at the Emirates Golf Club this year.

The Northern Irishman won the 2023 edition by one stroke over Patrick Reed, who was at the center of another rules controversy during the third round.

Reed’s ball disappeared in a palm tree after he hit his tee shot on the 17th hole. He then identified it using binoculars, but replay showed his ball going into a different tree than the one he identified, thus creating an inconsistency. Brandel Chamblee of the Golf Channel explained what went down last January, which became one of the more memorable moments in golf during 2023.

Alas, McIlroy wound up victorious, which marked his first victory of the year. He then went seven months without winning, as he became a winner again at the Genesis Scottish Open in July.

But now, McIlroy is only looking ahead as he, Hatton, Fleetwood, Harman, and Young hope to start their seasons off on the right foot.

The 2024 Dubai Desert Classic likely will not have another rules controversy like last year, but it will surely entertain, which is what golf fans everywhere want to see.

Jack Milko is a golf staff writer for SB Nation’s Playing Through. You can follow him on Twitter @jack_milko for more golf coverage. Be sure to check out @_PlayingThrough too.

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