The R&A has updated its exemption criteria for the 149th Open Championship.
The 106 players who had qualified for the 2020 edition at Royal St. George’s before the championship was canceled because of the COVID-19 pandemic will again be exempt into the 2021 championship, which is scheduled to be played July 15-18 at Royal St. George’s. But the R&A will use updated exemption categories to fill the remaining 50 spots.
New additions to these categories include:
- Top 50 in Official World Golf Ranking, not already exempt, as of May 23
- Top five players and ties among the top 20, not already exempt, in the FedExCup standings after the 2021 Travelers Championship
- A minimum of eight spots will be up for grabs via regional and final qualifying, which will take place next June
As a result of the changes, no further 2021 exemptions will be offered through the Open Qualifying Series, which typically awards spots via finishes in various professional tour events.
“We believe that it is important to honor all of the exemptions that were confirmed before The 149th Open was cancelled this year and so we are in a unique situation where a large number of players have already qualified and are in the field,” said Johnnie Cole-Hamilton, executive director of championships at The R&A. “In light of these exceptional circumstances, we have carefully reviewed our exemption categories and made adjustments so that players can earn places in the Championship from results achieved in both the 2020 and 2021 seasons as well as retaining opportunities through our qualifying events.”
Click here to see who’s already exempt, along with the complete list of exemption categories.