Cameron Smith seems to be at peace with his decision to leave the PGA Tour for LIV Golf.
Speaking to Daily Mail Australia ahead of the 29-year-old’s first appearance in three years at the Fortinet Australian PGA Championship later this month, Smith looked back on what he called a “scary career move.”
“I spoke to a lot of good people, my mum and dad a lot of good friends,’ Smith told the Daily Mail. “I have absolutely got no regrets. At the start it was definitely scary making a career move like that, it being a fresh Tour.”
The Australian had his best year ever on the PGA Tour in 2022, winning three times, including The Players and his first major title at the 150th Open Championship. He rose as high as No. 2 in the Official World Golf Ranking after his win at St. Andrews but has since slid to No. 3 after joining PGA Tour rival LIV Golf following the Tour Championship at the beginning of September.
Smith had two top-10s in the remaining four LIV individual events this fall, including a win at LIV Chicago in September, collecting the $4 million winner’s check, on top of his reported $100 million signing bonus.
He also said he’s maintained a lot of his friendships from the PGA Tour and even still spends time with his former Tour colleagues, despite their not agreeing with his decision. Smith said fans were the real winners of his choice.
“I think the fans love [LIV Golf] a lot which is really important for our sport because it gets a lot of people playing golf,” Smith said. “Even if it is just for a whack here or there and having a beer. The more eyes on golf the better.”
Smith led one of the latest groups of defectors to LIV Golf back in September, which included fellow Australian Marc Leishman. LIV Golf’s CEO is also Aussie legend Greg Norman.
Smith’s all-Aussie squad included Leishman, Matt Jones and Wade Ormsby and finished 2nd at LIV’s first team championship last month in Miami, on the strength of Smith’s final round 65. Each member of Punch GC took home $2 million.
He also told the Daily Mail he could see LIV eventually becoming a financial success, but it could take 10 years to finally see return on LIV’s initial investment.