Ever wondered how players qualify for the Open? NCG has put together a guide detailing every way a golfer can find their way into the field

How do you qualify for The Open? If you’ve ever wondered how players make their way into the field for golf’s oldest major, then keep reading…

Similarly to the US Open, you can seal a spot at the tournament through either exemption or qualification – but also if the field does not reach the required number of 156 entrants.

Firstly, let’s take a look at the exemptions…

How do you qualify for the Open? Exemptions

1. Win the Open

All previous winners of the Open that are aged 60 or under on the final day of the tournament will receive an invite.

2. Win the Masters

The previous five Masters champions will be entered.

3. Win the US Open

The last five year’s US Open winners will be granted an exemption by the R&A.

4. Win the PGA Championship

The winners of the PGA Championship from the last five years will be exempt.

5. Win the Players Championship

The winners of the last three Players Championships will play in the Open.

6. Win the BMW PGA Championship

The previous three winners of the BMW PGA Championship will receive a spot.

7. Win the Open de Argentina

The previous Open de Argentina champion will play in the Open.

8. Win the Japan Open

The last winner of the Japan Open will be exempt

9. Win the Senior’s Open

The winner of the previous season’s Senior’s Open will be entered into the field.

10. Finish in the top 10 at the previous year’s Open Championship

The ten lowest scorers, including any ties, will return to the Open.

11. Finish in the top 30 of the European Tour’s Race to Dubai 

The top 30 finishers in the Race to Dubai standings at the end of the previous season will qualify.

12. Finish in the top 30 of the PGA Tour’s FedEx Cup rankings

The 30 highest ranked players in last year’s FedEx Cup rankings will earn a place.

13. Finish in the top two of the Japan Tour rankings

The top two finishers in the rankings of the Japan Tour for the previous year will receive an entry.

14. Top the rankings on the PGA Tour of Australasia 

Finishing in top spot of the rankings will earn an invite.

15. Top the rankings on the Sunshine Tour

The No. 1 finisher on the Sunshine Tour rankings for the previous season will qualify.

16. Be inside the top 50 of the OWGR on a specific date

For this year’s tournament, all those inside the top 50 of the OWGR at week 21 of the season will qualify. For reference, the Open is in week 29 this year.

17. Be well ranked in the current season standing on specific tours

The top five players inside the top 20 in the Race to Dubai, and FedEx Cup standings, that are not already qualified will be entered. The top two not already exempt in the Japan Tour standings will qualify.

This year, the cut-off date is week 25.

18. Be the holder of an amateur title

Holders of the following amateur titles will all receive a spot in the field, providing they still hold amateur status:

British Amateur, US Amateur, European Amateur, Asia-Pacific Amateur, Mark H. McCormack Medal

How do you qualify or the Open? The qualifiers

There are a couple of different ways that players could make it into the Open field through qualification.

Firstly, there is the route through the Open Qualifying Series.

This is where players secure a limited number of spots that are up for grabs at various events worldwide.

Another way players can qualify is through the Open Qualifying Series – and you can read more about that right here.

So, how do you qualify for the Open? Well, now you know.

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