23 Feb 2022 | Professional golf |
US Open exemption added to Order of Merit awards
by Australian Golf Media
The list of rewards for the winner of this year’s ISPS HANDA PGA Tour of Australasia Order of Merit now boasts a ticket to the 2022 US Open in June. For the second year in a row, the regular Full Qualifying Series has been compromised due to the ongoing effects of COVID-19 with travel restrictions making it difficult for internationally-based players to compete in qualifying. As such, the USGA have made available a temporary exemption direct into the US Open for the highest finisher on the ISPS Handa PGA Tour of Australasia current Order of Merit not otherwise exempt. Confirmation of the temporary exemption category was part of the USGA’s release for the official opening date of entries on Wednesday and will provide an immediate opportunity in one of golf’s showpiece events for the winner. Fortinet Australian PGA champion Jed Morgan currently boasts a lead at the top of more than $73,000 from runner-up at Royal Queensland, Andrew Dodt, with six events remaining in the 2021/2022 season. The extension of the strategic alliance with the DP World Tour and PGA TOUR provided for additional benefits to the Order of Merit top placegetters and now a spot in the field at The Country Club in Brookline has sweetened the deal even further. “The PGA of Australia and PGA Tour of Australasia are here to provide a pathway to the game’s greatest events around the world and we are thrilled to see that our Order of Merit winner will now play in this year’s US Open,” said PGA of Australia CEO, Gavin Kirkman. “The US Open is one of the most celebrated championships in all of golf and to have one of locally-based players taking part will create an even greater level of interest here in Australia this year. “We are very proud of our past US Open champions in David Graham and Geoff Ogilvy and hopefully we will see another Australian lift the US Open trophy this year.” While Morgan has a strong lead at the top, several players have opportunities to overturn the lead across the closing six events and stamp their ticket to the 2022 US Open. The Order of Merit intrigue is also rich around the race for the second and third place which also gain playing exemptions onto the DP World Tour. A tie for 11th at TPS Murray River saw third-placed Anthony Quayle extend his advantage over Dimi Papadatos to $2,496.33 with Louis Dobbelaar ($84,218.77) and Brad Kennedy ($76,207.50) also within reach of that third spot. Kennedy is the only member of the top six on the Order of Merit not entered for TPS Sydney presented by Webex at Bonnie Doon Golf Club next week. ISPS Handa PGA Tour of Australasia Order of Merit (through TPS Murray River) 1. Jediah Morgan $180,878.77 2. Andrew Dodt $107,526.26 3. Anthony Quayle $91,417.33 4. Dimitrios Papadatos $88,921 5. Louis Dobbelaar $84,218.77 6. Brad Kennedy $76,207.50 7. Ben Campbell $59,921.20 8. Daniel Gale $59,475.63 9. Cameron John $55,569.17 10. David Micheluzzi $50,509.59
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