By Evin Priest
Dubai-based Spaniard Adrian Otaegui will make his return to LIV Golf weeks after winning the DP World Tour’s Andalucia Masters at Valderrama in his homeland. LIV Golf officials confirmed Chilean star and Torque GC team captain, Joaquin Niemann, selected Otaegui to tee it up at LIV’s $50-million team finale at Trump Doral outside Miami.
The LIV Golf Miami Team Championship will begin on Friday.
Otaegui had played in three LIV events — in England, Portland and Boston — but did not compete in its Bedminster, New Jersey or Chicago stops, or the recent overseas legs in Thailand and Saudi Arabia. His best finish was sixth place at the inaugural event outside London.
But this week, 29-year-old Otaegui has been chosen to play for Torque alongside teammates Scott Vincent and Jediah Morgan.
Otaegui captured his fourth DP World Tour title on the famed Valderrama course earlier this month by shooting a 19-under-par total to win by six shots over Joakim Lagergren.
A birdie at the last for a six shot victory, setting the tournament record at -19 👏@adrianotaegui | #EDAM2022 pic.twitter.com/2e4nCmSD6Z
— DP World Tour (@DPWorldTour) October 16, 2022
He earned $500,000 for the victory, which was not the most widely popular in tour circles given the European circuit attempted to ban and fine any of its members who played in LIV Golf events. The bans were blocked by a UK arbitration court so LIV golfers such as Martin Kaymer, Ian Poulter, Patrick Reed, Talor Gooch and Lee Westwood have been able to compete on the DP World Tour.
With his win, Otaegui secured valuable World Ranking points, which LIV colleagues have not been able to obtain on the rival circuit because the fledgling series is not yet eligible to earn them. Otaegui jumped from 158th to 95th and, perhaps more interestingly, also moved into the top six for European Ryder Cup qualifying via its world points list. Coincidentally, Otaegui’s victory at Spain came on the same day LIV Golf’s individual season concluded at the LIV Golf Jeddah Invitational in Saudi Arabia.
This week at Doral, LIV’s team finale will not have an individual stroke-play component but will boast a $50 million purse. All 48 competitors are assured of earning at least $250,000. The bottom four teams are guaranteed $1 million while the winning team will split $16 million.
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