Quietly, the US Open and the 2023 Open Championship are allowing LIV golfers to participate. Back in December, Augusta National announced that it would not exclude LIV players from the Masters, and now the US Open at LA Country Club and the British Open at Royal Liverpool are following suit. The major tournaments announced their qualifying criteria in February and the lists of players who have already qualified include LIV players.
The qualified LIV players get their eligibility mostly through past major victories, for example Martin Kaymer is still qualified for the US Open after his victory in 2014. However, due to the lack of world ranking points and the exclusion from the PGA Tour, it will be harder and harder for LIV players to qualify for the majors as long as there is no separate LIV criterion. However, the way is open for them, especially for US Open and British Open, via the qualifying tournaments.
LIV players at the US Open
Prior to last year’s edition, a statement from the USGA said, “We are proud to be the most open championship in the world, and those players who have earned the right to participate in this year’s championship, both by exemption and qualification, will have the opportunity to do so.” The same is true for 2023. The following LIV players are currently qualified for the US Open: Bryson DeChambeau, Brooks Koepka, Dustin Johnson and Martin Kaymer (former U.S. Open winners for the past decade), Phil Mickelson (because of his 2021 PGA Championship victory), Cameron Smith (2022 Open Championship) and Joaquin Niemann (qualified for the 2022 Tour Championship).
In addition to major victories and the world rankings, there is the possibility of securing a place in the tournament via tournament victories, FedExCup and Race to Dubai, and for amateurs via various amateur competitions. In addition, the qualifying tournaments are open to all.
LIV players at the Open Championship
Also at the R&A and the Open Championship the motto of open competition is still valid. 13 current or former LIV players are qualified for the tournament in Royal Liverpool according to the current status:
Louis Oosthuizen, Phil Mickelson, Henrik Stenson, Cameron Smith (former winners under 60), Dustin Johnson, Bryson DeChambeau (top 10 at the 150th Open), Thomas Pieters, Adrian Otaegui, Adri Arnau, Richard Bland (top 30 in the final Race to Dubai 2022), Brooks Koepka (US Open win), Patrick Reed (Masters win), Joaquin Niemann, Talor Gooch (top 30 in the FedExCup 2022).
In addition to the qualifying criteria, there will be the Qualifying Series. There will be 16 spots across a series of Regional and Final Qualifying, as well as a total of 34 spots at tournaments on the PGA TOUR, DP World Tour, Asian Tour, Japan Golf Tour, PGA Tour of Australasia and Sunshine Tour. Provided they are eligible to play on the tours, these tournaments are also open to LIV golfers in an attempt to gain a Major entry.