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Booth Under Fire For Saudi Golf Sponsorship

Scottish professional golfer Carly Booth has received heavy criticism stemming from a social media announcement she made earlier this week.

Booth, a two-time Ladies European Tour winner, posted to both her Twitter and Instagram accounts a photo of her posing next to her staff bag, which had been updated to show her newest sponsor: Saudi Golf.

“I am honoured to represent @Golf_Saudi as they acknowledge that women in sport is of paramount importance,” Booth wrote in the now-deleted posts. “Although culturally they are in a different place to some countries, they are doing everything they can to introduce girls and women into sport and lead healthy lifestyles.”

Booth received backlash immediately from all corners of the internet, including inside the sport from former LPGA pro Anya Alvarez and British golf host Georgie Bingham.

Booth hasn’t spoken publicly about the sponsorship since pulling down the posts.

Male golfers came under similar fire earlier this year for accepting appearance fees from the Saudi regime to play in the European Tour event held in February.

Dustin Johnson, Brooks Koepka, Justin Rose, Bryson DeChambeau, Ian Poulter, Sergio Garcia, Patrick Reed, Henrik Stenson and Ernie Els were among the most notable names in the field.

Chamblee Bashes Players For Competing In Saudi Arabia

The participation of many of the top players in the game drew the ire of Golf Channel analyst Brandel Chamblee, who had the following to say about those competing.

“A more definitive personal rebuke can be shown to the P.R. stunt of this regime, which is really just trying to hoodwink the West, by not participating, by refusing to participate,” Chamblee said. “Your participation in some way enriches this regime. And by nonparticipation of the athletes, in general, you can in some marginal way — and I applaud Paul Casey (for skipping the event) — make a statement about human rights.

“Whether the European Tour knows it, and whether the players know it, by participating, they are ventriloquists for this abhorrent, reprehensible regime.” 

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