Sour Grapes

Joaquin Niemann still salty about world ranking despite second win of the season in Jeddah

Everything’s coming up Milhouse Niemann at the moment. The Chilean-born LIV Golf pro is en fuego, winning two of the first three events of the 2024 season and earning a golden ticket to the Masters in the process. During his victorious post-round interview in Jeddah on Sunday, Niemann was called “one of the hottest golfers on the planet right now” and “one of the favorites to win a major championship this summer.” Those claims are tough to dispute, but Niemann himself didn’t seem thrilled with the accolades, using the opportunity to once again take aim at the OWGR, which currently rank him as no. 72 in the world.

"How is that possible," Niemann fired back at the reporter's compliments, "if I'm like 100 in the world?"

Between this and Talor Gooch’s recent comments about the Masters deserving an asterisk, you could start a winery with all the sour grapes being squeezed by LIV golfers as the majors approach. Unlike Gooch, however, Niemann was so motivated to play in golf's biggest events that he paid hefty fines to retain his DP World Tour membership and played in the Australian PGA Championship, Dubai Desert Classic and International Series Oman this winter, winning the Australian PGA Championship.

So is it revenge or glory driving Niemann forward, beads of sweat rolling down his face in the burning Saudi Arabian sun? From the sound of things, perhaps a little bit of both, and that’s scary news for his competitors. A golfer peaking heading into major season is one thing. A golfer peaking heading into major season with a chip on their shoulder is a whole other animal.