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US Open field

What is the US Open cut rule?

How many make it through? Do they have to be within a certain score? Find out everything you need to know about the US Open cut rule here…

 

Winning the US Open is one of the sport’s greatest honours, but what about the US Open cut rules? And just how many players make it? You’ve come to the right place. Here’s everything you need to know.

A history of the US Open cut rule

The USGA has tweaked the cut line over the years for its most prestigious golf tournament.

The US Open implemented its first cut in 1965 when the tournament switched from a three-day event to a four-day event. Like at the Masters, the original cut rule allowed any players within 10 shots of the leader to advance to the weekend.

This meant there was no definitive number of players who could make the cut. At the 1996 tournament at Oakland Hills, 108 players made the cut, which is way over half of the 156-man field.

In 2011, the USGA then had away with the original cut rule, adjusting the system to have only the top 60 players advance in their quest to toughen up the tournament.

us open cut rules

So what is the current US Open cut rules?

The 36-hole cut rule is now much more straightforward – but it is different across the other major championships.

To make the cut after 36 holes and advance to the weekend at the US Open, players need to be inside the top 60 – including ties – after the first two rounds.

That is 10 spots fewer than the Open Championship and the PGA Championship, which allows the lowest 70 players into the weekend.

The number still fluctuates year on year, but it is highly unlikely that we will ever see anything like the 108 that made it through at Oakland Hills.

In recent years, that number has been anywhere between 61 and 79, with the higher end of the scale coming at the 2019 edition of the tournament. Only a year later, during the COVID-19 pandemic, only 61 players made it through to the weekend at Winged Foot.

In 2022, 64 players made the cut at the 2022 US Open at the Country Club at Brookline, while 71 players made the cut at Torrey Pines in 2021.

In terms of records, there is a chance that both the youngest and oldest marks could be unbeatable.

The great Sam Snead is the oldest player to make the cut at a US Open since World War II. He was 61 years and 19 days when he did so at the 1973 edition. Tom Watson is the only other 60-something to do so.

At the other end of the scale, two 17-year-olds have made the cut at the US Open. Beau Hossler was exactly 17 years and 3 months when he made the cut in 2012, and he finished T29, exactly like Snead did five decades prior.

Michael Thorbjornsen is the other man to have made the cut before his 18th birthday, achieving the feat in 2019, but he was five months older than Hossler.

Now have your say

What do you make of the cut rule at the US Open? Is it right, or should it be changed? Let us know your thoughts with a post on X, formerly Twitter!

Matt Coles

Matt Coles

Mention a European country, and Matt will tell you which resorts make the National Club Golfer Top 100s: European Resorts list. He might even throw in who designed the golf course and how many rooms the hotel has got at each one…

Matt got into the game of golf from a young age, following his old man to the local golf club. He fell for the sport, and now can’t seem to go a day without thinking about how to improve his game (Thanks Dad!). Matt has been a member of Howley Hall GC in Leeds since 2020, and is just about managing to maintain a single-figure handicap. He likes to remind people that he once broke 75, but won’t tell people that it was on a shortened course during the winter.

He moved to Leeds after graduating from the University of Central Lancashire with a First Class Honours degree in Sports Journalism. Matt joined NCG after almost five years travelling the world with the Professional Squash Association, working on events in all four corners of the globe.

Matt currently plays a Cobra King LTDx driver and RadSpeed 3-wood. TaylorMade monopolise the rest of his bag, with a SIM UDI, M5 irons and both Milled Grind and HI-TOE wedges, along with a Monza Redline putter. He uses a Vice Pro Plus golf ball, because he’s a bit different…

Away from golf, Matt is a Manchester United fan, and a keen runner, having ran the Rob Burrow Leeds Marathon (his first and possibly last), in May 2023.

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