Recent reports in Spain suggested that Hatton and PGA Tour star Tony Finau could follow Rahm's path to the Saudi Arabian-backed league. According to Golf WRX, Hatton could be the first member of Rahm's new team, which will debut during the first tournament of the LIV season from Feb. 2 to Feb. 4.
Hatton, a member of Team Europe's victorious 2018 Ryder Cup squad, continued to showcase his skills during the 2023 Ryder Cup held at Marco Simone Golf and Country Club in Guidonia, Rome, Italy. Europe emerged triumphant with a 16.5-11.5 victory, with Hatton contributing significantly with a record of 3-0-1.
Notably, Hatton secured a win in his Sunday singles match against Brian Harman, further solidifying his impact on Team Europe's success. He and Rahm have built up a relationship in their time as teammates and have been seen joking with each other on multiple occasions, particularly during the Ryder Cup at Whistling Straits in September.
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Rahm will also have an ownership stake in the team, as reported in his lucrative deal. The team and its members remain unknown at this time. Initially, there was an assumption that Rahm would align himself with Fireballs GC, a predominantly Spanish team captained by Sergio Garcia. This team boasts notable Spanish-speaking players such as Abraham Ancer, Carlos Ortiz, and Eugenio Chacarra.
Rahm has previously expressed his desire to play a role in the expansion and development of golf in Spain, which fueled the assumptions. Born in Barrika, Spain, the 29-year-old golfer has strong ties to his home country and has represented Spain as a part of Team Europe in the Ryder Cup.
Before signing the deal, Rahm emphasized the importance of the team aspect, which was the ultimate catalyst for his decision to leave the PGA Tour. However, Rahm also expressed his desire to maintain his credibility on the Tour and continue performing on both circuits.
"I don't think it's spoken about enough. I think you have some of the best players in the world who are also now leaders of their own teams, partners of the league, in a massive business that's global and ever-growing," said Rahm. "So, it's an aspect of the game that I myself looked over, and now it's a reality. I can't wait to get into it, learn more, and hopefully evolve my team and my brand.
"I myself, growing up, being a massive Athletic Bilbao fan, realized that has a bit of an appeal, right?" continued Rahm regarding the team aspect. "Much more than I gave it credit for, even in golf. It's something that I'm passionate about and something that hopefully I can learn a lot about and improve."2023-12-10T00:27:24Z dg43tfdfdgfd