Woods might join European Tour if new membership rules put in place

Tiger Woods at the Turkish Airlines World Golf Final
Getty Images
Tiger Woods could play a few more events on the European Tour in future years.
Associated Press

Series: Other Tour

Published: Wednesday, October 10, 2012 | 12:20 p.m.

BELEK, Turkey -- Tiger Woods will consider the possibility of joining the European Tour after changes are made to membership qualification.

The European Tour is expected to announce soon that participation in the Ryder Cup, Presidents Cup and Seve Trophy will count toward the 13 events needed for tour membership.

Woods said Wednesday he last looked into joining the European Tour in 2000 when the requirement was 11 events.

''I knew I would have to play one or two more events back then when it was 11, but now that criteria is 13,'' he said at the Turkish Airlines World Golf Final on Wednesday. ''I don't know what my numbers are as I know I played 19 in the States this year and whether it crosses over or not but I will again look at it.

''I did play Abu Dhabi, but then 13 are certainly a lot more than 11, especially playing full-time in the States.''

Woods would be only two or three events short of the 13 if the list includes the Ryder Cup, Presidents Cup, four majors, four World Golf Championship events and appearances in either Abu Dhabi or Dubai.

Taking up European Tour membership wouldn’t mean Woods would drop his PGA Tour membership, but rather that he would be eligible for the money titles and other awards on both circuits – as is now the case with players like Luke Donald and Rory McIlroy.

Meanwhile, organizers said they hope Woods will compete in the inaugural Turkish Open next year.

The $7 million event will be played Nov. 7-10, 2013, at The Montgomerie Course in Belek.

Ahmet Agaoglu, president of the Turkish Golf Federation, said the 78-player European Tour event will take place a week before the season-ending Dubai Championship.

Earlier, Agaoglu apologized for allegedly head-butting an official photographer before Woods' opening round match on Tuesday.

The altercation occurred when Woods was about to tee up against Charl Schwartzel. Agaoglu was seen arguing with the photographer and telling him to move off Woods' intended line of shot before security staff removed the accredited Turkish-born photographer from the first tee.

''They were pushing the security guards and one of them pushed me and I replied by pushing him back, as well,'' Agaoglu said. ''I am trying to make everything this week so perfect and it's unfortunate my reaction happened. However, I will prepare a written apology and send it to him apologizing for my own actions.''