Skip navigation
Sign up to follow your favorites on all your devices.
Sign up

Dutch pro says he’s won court case to compete in Olympics

UPDATE: Joost Luiten says his court case was successful and that the Netherlands Olympic Committee and Netherlands Sports Federation have until noon ET to enter him into the Olympic field.

“The Olympic rings are colored again,” Luiten wrote.

It’s unclear if Luiten’s victory means Darius van Driel and Dewi Weber will also be allowed to compete.

Finland’s Tapio Pulkkanen (No. 378) was projected as the last man into the 60-man Olympic men’s field before Luiten’s ruling.

The fields for both men’s and women’s competitions will be finalized July 9.

Joost Luiten is not giving up on his Olympic dream.

The Dutch pro, who recently qualified for the Olympic men’s golf competition but was denied his spot by the Netherlands Olympic Committee and Netherlands Sports Federation, is taking his case to court, the 38-year-old Luiten said Tuesday on social media.

“I will be fighting the decision to not send me to the Olympics by the NOC/NSF in court today,” Luiten wrote. “We will put our case in front of a judge and get an independent judgement. An independent look to my case that’s something I have been looking for and know I have not been getting from the NOC/NSF.”

Luiten was among three Dutch players who are prohibited from competing in Paris next month. Darius van Driel and Dewi Weber were also not selected to compete despite qualifying for their respective 60-player fields via the International Golf Federation’s rankings.

Luiten was ranked No. 147 in the Official World Golf Ranking at the time of the decision and No. 40 in the Olympic rankings. Van Driel was No. 237 and No. 49, while Weber was No. 302 and No. 58 in the women’s rankings. Anne van Dam, No. 108 and No. 34, was permitted to compete.

“According to them [Dutch committee], it has not been demonstrated that there is a reasonable chance of a top-eight ranking during the Olympic Games,” said the Netherlands Golf Federation, which presented on June 14 its arguments as to why Luiten, van Driel and Weber should be allowed to represent their country at the Olympics.

Included in the NGF’s arguments was a letter from the IGF, which included, “It is common for lower-ranked players to make a significant impact in major tournaments, defying their current standings. There are numerous examples of players who are lower ranked on OWGR who perform well in big events.”

For Luiten, it’s the second straight Olympics in which he was denied competing despite qualifying. Back in 2021 in Tokyo, Slovakia’s Rory Sabbatini, No. 161 in the world at the time, won silver and Chinese Taipei’s C.T. Pan (No. 181) took bronze in a playoff. Luiten was ranked No. 177 then and Wil Besseling was No. 221.

The Dutch committee requires its men’s golfers be ranked among the top 27 of the IGF’s rankings and women’s golfers be ranked among the top 24. Competitors can also retain their qualification if they finish among the top 8 in at least one strong field (at least five top-50 players or 10 top-100 players), which is how van Dam, runner-up at the LET’s Tour Championship last year, qualified.

With the three Dutch players removed from this year’s fields, their replacements, per the allocation lists, were set to be Switzerland’s Joel Girrbach (No. 366), Finland’s Tapio Pulkkanen (No. 378) and Austria’s Sarah Schober (No. 330).