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How a decent weekend's golf could leave Wantima's Cam Smith $28 million better off


Cameron Smith concedes it’s impossible to ignore the mind-boggling money at stake as he eyes a $50 million year at LIV Golf’s regular-season finale in Jeddah.

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Australia’s golf superstar enters the last individual event of the year starting on Friday as the points leader in a three-way battle with Americans Talor Gooch and Bryson DeChambeau for the $US18 million ($A28 million) bonus.

With 40 points up for grabs for Sunday’s victor, the simplest scenario for Smith (170 points) is to win to hold off Gooch (162) and DeChambeau (146) and clinch the season’s title and another eye-watering pay day.

Gooch would be guaranteed 2023 individual honours with a fourth success of the year, but DeChambeau can only snatch the bounty if he wins or places second and Smith and Gooch finish outside the top 10 at Royal Greens Golf and Country Club.

“Everyone out here wanted to be in our position at the end of this week, so it’s definitely a good spot to be in,” Smith said.

With victories at LIV Golf Bedminster and London, and a playoff loss in Tulsa to Dustin Johnson, Smith has already banked $US14,953,416 ($A23.3 million) in prize money from the Saudi-backed breakaway league.

If he secures the season-long individual prize, the 2022 British Open champion and former world No.2 will have made more than $50 million in on-course earnings alone in 2023.

While acutely aware of the head-spinning numbers, the already-set 30-year-old Queenslander says he’s only focused on winning this week and allowing the rest to take care of itself.

“That’s kind of the mindset every week, to come here to win. So I don’t think it’s really any different to any other week,” Smith said.

“For sure there’s a little bit more up for grabs this week. You have to acknowledge that and really get on your toes and just try and go out there and win the tournament.

“It’s the same as every other week – but more to play for.”

Chuffed and somewhat surprised to have won three times this year, Gooch has a similar approach to Smith.

“I keep telling everybody, you just know that the two of these guys are going to have a good week this week, and the only way to know that you’re going to get the job done is just to go and win,” the American said.

“I’ve used the term a lot – the rule of 67. I’m just going to control what I can control, try and shoot 67 and lower each day and see where the chips fall.

“I know the only scenario that I have control of is if I go and win, and that takes care of everything.”

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