American cites his family’s recent move to Scottsdale, Ariz., and his need to help with the transition
Withdrew: American Tony Finau has pulled out of next week’s Saudi International, he announced via Twitter, citing his family’s recent move to Scottsdale, Ariz. Finau was among a number of prominent players who had committed to the European Tour’s second annual Saudi event. In light of regional tension after the U.S. drone strike that killed notorious Iranian Gen. Qasem Soleimani, concern about professional golf in the Middle East has heightened. Finau said that Saudi authorities already have extended an invitation to the 2021 event, which he accepted. The Saudi International will be the third of the three-week Desert Swing that began with last week’s stop in Abu Dhabi and this week’s tournament in Dubai. The list of elite golfers committed to play in Saudi Arabia includes Americans Brooks Koepka, Dustin Johnson and Phil Mickelson, plus other major champions: South Africa’s Ernie Els, Spain’s Sergio Garcia, Germany’s Martin Kaymer, Ireland’s Shane Lowry, Northern Ireland’s Graeme McDowell and Sweden’s Henrik Stenson.