No room for Joost Luiten in Olympic field despite court win

Dutch golfer Joost Luiten successfully sued his country’s Olympic committee, but despite his efforts, he won’t be heading to Paris.

The Netherlands did not allow Luiten and two other golfers — Darius van Driel on the men’s side and Dewi Weber in the women’s competition — to represent the country in the Olympics even though they had qualified.

Luiten took the matter to a Dutch court, where the judge ruled in his favor. But the International Golf Federation said Tuesday that Luiten’s “unused quota spot” was already reallocated and he could not be added to the field.

“The IGF was not a party to the legal action brought forth by Luiten in the Netherlands,” the statement said. “Nevertheless, in an effort to support Luiten, the IGF sought an exception from the IOC to increase the field size of the men’s Olympic golf competition from 60 to 61 competitors to include Luiten, however the request was denied by the IOC today.

“The IGF has advised Luiten of the IOC’s decision, and he has not informed the IGF whether he intends to pursue this matter further.”

Luiten, van Driel and Weber were ranked highly enough in their respective world rankings to make the Olympics, but they did not meet additional national requirements laid out by the Dutch Olympic Committee and Dutch Sports Federation (NOC*NSF). In essence, the Dutch governing body argued that they were unlikely to finish in the top eight in Olympic competition.

Luiten, 38, was ranked No. 147 in the world and No. 40 in the Olympic rankings at the time the fields were decided. He is a six-time winner on the DP World Tour, though he hasn’t won since 2018.