Shane Lowry is “not surprised by anything” in golf after Jon Rahm’s move to LIV Golf but remains hopeful the men’s game can unite in the future.

The start of the Saudi-backed league in 2022 sent shockwaves through the sport, with the likes of Phil Mickelson, Bryson DeChambeau, Brooks Koepka and Sergio Garcia all leaving the PGA Tour to compete in LIV’s 54-hole, limited-field events.

Rahm had been a staunch supporter of the PGA Tour and while June’s framework agreement between the American circuit, the DP World Tour and Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund – which bankrolls LIV – was hoped to bring the game back together, many players were publicly critical of the secretive nature of negotiations which led to the agreement.

Shane Lowry

Rahm’s move earlier this month was the latest chapter in a tumultuous period for the game and Lowry admits nothing surprises him anymore.

“We weren’t too surprised in the end, but I’m not surprised by anything that happens at the minute,” Lowry told reporters at the launch of the Irish Open.

“It had been rumoured for a while so there’s no smoke without fire, is there?”

After his switch, Rahm spoke of his hope that he would be able to continue to play across tours, a hope shared by his European Ryder Cup team-mate from 2021 and September’s 16.6-11.5 win over the United States.

“Hopeful is the word I’d use,” added Lowry.

“I mean, I’m not involved in anything. I just try to worry about my own thing and get on with my own game.

“But I’d be very hopeful that at some stage in the near future we will be back playing the same tournaments together and I think that’s what the world of golf needs.”