European Tour Keith Pelley has been a busy man since taking over the position. Essentially, he wants to shake up the game to offer more intrigue, drama and sustained interest.
His latest idea is to make Thursday and Friday tournament rounds more meaningful rather than a means to an eventual end.
You will still have the majors and other big tournaments that are important to the game’s history, but you won’t be able to have the continuous growth of the game and you won’t have tournaments on a week-on-week basis. Because I don’t believe if you catapult ahead a number of years that there will be as many 72-hole tournaments worldwide that there are today. It just doesn’t make sense. And there’s no question that one of the biggest priorities that we have with the game is addressing Thursday-Friday. Because in the way that people live their lives, they want immediate gratification. They want to be able to get immediate results. And they want to follow things that are meaningful, because there is such a saturation of content. Our Thursday-Fridays are not as meaningful as they need to be. Yes, they position you for the weekend, but there is no result. There is no payoff at the end of Thursday or Friday. So what I’m turning our attention to internally is what are we going to do in 2018 to address Thursday-Friday? Because we need more engagement. We need higher ratings. I think that is a worldwide challenge for every tour.
Unfortunately, he didn’t offer any specific ideas to spruce up Thursday and Friday rounds. But, Pelley isn’t a man of inaction so stay tuned.
Let’s be honest, the players are the recipe for success. They have to buy into this. So everything that we have done, whether it be the Little Interviews, the mannequin challenge, the Awkward Reporter, the players all are for it, because they know that we’re creating entertaining content. The way I’ve expressed it to our digital people is, “Be as imaginative as you possibly can. Don’t think anything can’t be done.” There will always be a check and balance, right? But think that you can do it as opposed to, “They’ll never let us do that.” So it’s changing the culture.