How Will Jay Monahan of the PGA Tour and Yasir al-Rumayyan Work Together?

For someone like Player, 87, a nine-time major tournament winner from South Africa, the hope is broad, global growth, not just on the PGA Tour.

“The women’s game and the weekend golfer should not be forgotten with all this money pouring in,” he said. “Allow the ladies to earn a better living. Use the money to make golf accessible for the masses. Let’s make it a point to share this new era to all who love our sport.”

At the heart of all the possibilities, for now, is the relationship between two men — an impossibly rich backer from Saudi Arabia and a tradition-rich sports executive from Massachusetts.

“We just sat down, him and I, in Venice for about two hours, trying to understand each other,” al-Rumayyan said. “He talked about his aspirations, his life. I did the same. Even my family was with me in Venice. We had a lunch with a big group of people. The understanding and the positive thinking is what really unites us in growing the game of golf. The passion that we have, both of us, is what really cemented this kind of agreement.”

Springtime in Venice has a way of sparking such enchantment.

Skeptics may point out that Venice is a series of islands and an easy place to lose your sense of direction. Cynics might note that it is sinking.

Ahmed Al Omran contributed reporting.

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