Luke Donald unconcerned, but are too many European players playing on the PGA Tour?

By Paul Higham Twitter: @SkySportsPaulH.   Last Updated: 21/11/12 5:43pm

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Luke Donald insists having so many of the top Europeans playing jointly on the PGA Tour will not harm the European Tour, as chief George O'Grady states that they will be looking to stage more events in England and mainland Europe in the near future.

Ten of the 12 victorious European Ryder Cup team will be splitting time between their home Tour and the PGA Tour in America next year, but opinion is divided as to whether that will lead to a slump in fortunes for the European Tour in 2013.

Martin Kaymer, who hit the putt to retain the Ryder Cup in Chicago, is amongst the latest wave of European big-hitters who have pledged half of their schedule for events in the States next year.

Our Sky Sports columnist Rob Lee fears for the European Tour if too many of their top stars play away from Europe, while Tour chief O'Grady admits they are concerned, and wants to stage more events back in mainland Europe and England to attract players back.

"I think it is vital that the European authorities do all they can to convince players to tee off on this side of the pond more often than not; you can't force guys to turn up, but the circuit may lose some of its lustre if the big names don't play more often."
Rob Lee

World number two Donald, who achieved the same feat as Rory McIlroy last year by topping the money lists on both the European and PGA Tours, does not see it as a problem for players playing on both Tours.

"It's nice to see European golf dominant in the world," Donald told Sky Sports.

"I think it's very positive for the European players, with Rory number one and I think I've slipped back to number two, but in terms of golf I think the European Tour is in a good place."

European Tour chief O'Grady did admit that the sheer volume of tournaments now being played outside of continental Europe was a cause for concern, but says that will be addressed in time.

"We're concerned," said O'Grady. "We'd like to have more tournaments in our homeland.

"All the tournaments we have around the world are so big they market it in their local area and they get seen around the world - we can't have things anymore just in your own back yard.

"People say we don't have many events in England, we have quite a lot in the United Kingdom, in the Open Championship you have the true world championship of golf.

"Then with the BMW PGA Championship is our flagship event that gives us a drive there. We will be having more in England and in mainland Europe, but these things go in cycles."

Donald has also suggested that the Race To Dubai be revamped to be more like the Fed-Ex Play-Off system, to ensure that the excitement foes right down to the wire.

McIlroy, though, who has already sewn up the European crown before Dubai, is not so keen having won two play-off events in the States but failing to take home the $10m bonus won by Brandt Snedeker.

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