In hybrid year for The Open, there are only a few places left

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The PGA Championship will begin to take shape after this week with the top 70 on a special PGA Tour silver roster entering the field. For the US Open, any ineligible person who is not in the top 60 of the world rankings can visit one of the 10 final qualifying venues in America.

The British Open is more like a closed store this year, but not by choice.

At the start of the summer, the Open offers qualifying places to top players from European tournaments and the PGA Tour. But these aren’t available as the R&A tries to honor those who qualified for a major that was canceled last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Once the world top 50 has been determined on May 23, there will be some rare spots for professionals available for Royal St. George’s July 15-18.

There are eight qualifying places in England. There are three locations for the Japan Golf Tour events. And the R&A will take Europe’s top five and PGA Tour points lists at the end of June provided they are in the top 20. Players can also qualify by winning the PGA Championship or the US Open, a slightly larger task.

Last year, the majors had to adjust their criteria due to the pandemic. The Masters, postponed by seven months, chose to stick to their April field. The US Open, postponed three months to 2020, had to go without qualifying and offered exemption categories that reflected a qualifying system.

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The British Open has been canceled.

This means that the four “Open Qualifying Series” venues that took place before the pandemic are being honored. Danny Lee, Joel Dahmen and Keith Mitchell were the top three top 10 players at Bay Hill a year ago in March to win places. They will be on the pitch because the Open was not played last year. Mitchell and Lee haven’t finished in the top 10 since this week at Bay Hill.

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R&A revises formats for regional Open Championship final qualifiers

Also on the pitch are those who reached the Tour Championship in August 2019, a roster that includes Lucas Glover and Chez Reavie.

“I guess it’s similar to what people think of exemptions,” Glover said. “I won my place two years ago, so I should have played last year. So maybe I can play this year.

The R&A generally has 12 sites for its Open Qualifying Series. Last year, the PGA Tour would have had such qualifiers at the Canadian Open, Travelers’ Championship and the John Deere Classic. Europe lost at sites in Germany, Ireland and Scotland.

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