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Scott Vincent: the Zimbabwean golfer who won the golden ticket

by Staff Reporter
06 Apr 2023 at 17:25hrs | Views
Even in Scott Vincent's wildest dreams, it's unlikely that he would have been able to imagine how much his life would change over the space of a year. He's seen such a dramatic shift in personal circumstances that any Hollywood director might be tempted to bring Vincent's journey to the big screen in the future.

The road less travelled
Admittedly, the Zimbabwean has taken an unorthodox road to the top which means that, in many respects, he is still an unknown in the sporting world. At least, if you were to peruse the latest Paddy Power golf odds in the lead-up to the Masters, you wouldn't see Vincent's name among the players' allocated prices to win the green jacket.
Instead, if you were to bet on the Masters, you would come across international superstars like Rory McIlroy at a price of +650 to win or Scottie Scheffler at +750 to defend his title from 2022. Yes, you'll find the box office names of world golf on this list but there would be no sign of the man who was born in Harare in 1992. So, how has Vincent won the proverbial lottery while also not being eligible to play in the majors? LIV Golf is the short answer.

The emergence of LIV Golf
For anyone unaware of what LIV Golf is, it is a new golf league that is financially backed by the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia. In short, it was set up in 2022 to directly rival the PGA Tour but, to do this successfully, LIV had to convince contracted PGA Tour players to jump ship.

Given that the PGA Tour is one of the most lucrative sporting leagues in the world, LIV had to break the bank in order to prise their star players away. The results of LIV's endeavors were mixed, with Rory McIlroy and Tiger Woods swerving their advances while Dustin Johnson and Bryson DeChambeau agreed to sign contracts with the new enterprise after accepting checks for over $100 million to do so.

Still, you might ask what this has to do with Vincent.

Well, while the LIV organizers were finally able to draw up a roster and get their product off the ground in 2022, they then set up a deal with the Asian Tour to act as their feeder program in exchange for allowing their persona non-grata players to compete on their tour. This was negotiated on behalf of the players in order to gain world ranking points which the various governing bodies of the international game decided couldn't be earned during LIV events.

What this essentially meant was that the winner of the Asian Tour's Order of Merit, otherwise referred to as the International Series now after LIV's involvement, would earn a place on the official LIV Golf Series every year - the richest golf league in the world.

Vincent's ship comes in
At the end of the inaugural season of the International Series, the winner of the Order of Merit was none other than Zimbabwe's Scott Vincent who managed to accumulate $517,845 over the course of seven events, beating second place Sihwan Kim who earned $437,133.

Just like that, Vincent, who had spent the last ten years trying to carve out a living on the unforgiving golf circuits of South Africa and Asia, won the golden ticket to golf's biggest payday.


To date, Vincent has played just two LIV events this season but has won $542,500 which is $25,000 more than he managed during the whole of 2022 on the International Series.

As a way of showing how much money is available to players on the LIV Tour, it's worth saying that Vincent didn't threaten the top of the leaderboard at any stage during the opening two tournaments this season with a T15 finish at Mayakoba, before registering a T20 result in Tucson. The reality is that, in this new league which is disrupting the 'traditional' professional game, players don't have to win to be rewarded with eye-watering amounts.

In Vincent's case, a career that was better renowned for admirable toiling and persistent grinding in far-flung places around the globe has led to a position where he will now rival the earning power of the best players on the planet. It just goes to show, you never do quite know what is around the corner.

Source - Byo24News