WILTSHIRE golfer Jordan Smith has ruled out the possibility of joining the controversial LIV Golf Series and says he harbours ambitions of joining golf’s elite competition – the PGA Tour – in the near future instead.

Smith recorded a top-50 finish at the recent 150th Open Championship at St Andrews where he played alongside several of his peers who have already joined, or are planning to join, the divisive new set-up faced by golf legend Greg Norman.

LIV Golf is being backed by the sovereign wealth fund of Saudi Arabia, which has been accused of human rights violations and was linked to the murder of Washington Post reporter Jamal Khashoggi in 2018.

Many have accused anyone associated with LIV Golf of being complicit in helping Saudi Arabia pull attention away from alleged crimes.

Smith chose not to discuss issues of morality regarding LIV Golf, instead stating players who drop allegiances with the DP World Tour or PGA Tour in favour of chasing astronomical amounts of money may find they are consequently harming their long-term prospects in the game.

He said: “I can understand why some of the older guys have decided to go and play over there.

“Some of the guys who might be coming to the end of their careers and looking for a quick pay-out, but I don’t understand why a few of the younger guys have.

“I think it will be a bit of a struggle for them eventually as they’re not getting world-ranking points for at least another year or two.

“Those guys are going to eventually fall down the world rankings and then struggle to get into major tournaments and WGC events should they want to.”

Smith’s friend and fellow Wiltshire golfer Laurie Canter recently joined LIV Golf, but the Chippenham man reiterated he will not be following suit for a variety of reasons.

He said: “It's not something I’d entertain, no. I’m in a good position, I’ve been playing well on the DP World Tour, and mine and my team’s aim is to get out onto the PGA Tour eventually.

“At the moment, our aims are to finish in the top-10 or top-five of the Race to Dubai, and we want to get back inside the top-50 in the world.

“There is a lot of golf to play still this year, so I’ve got to keep plugging away and keep churning out these good events.

“Hopefully, we can get that win this year. Even if the year was to stop now then it would top off a good year that we’ve had. That would put the cherry on top, if we got the W.”