Top women players eligible for British Open
BY iseekgolf.com | European PGA Tour | 2006 British Open | General | 21 Oct 2005
The 135th Open Championship entry form is now available at www.opengolf.com and, for the first time, the entry conditions include a qualification route into the Championship for women.
Male professional golfers and male amateurs (whose playing handicaps do not exceed scratch) may now be joined at Regional Qualifying by the top five women and ties from each of the four major championships in the women’s game. In addition, any women meeting the entry requirements for International Final Qualifying, Local Final Qualifying and The Open itself can enter at these stages directly.
Commenting on the new entry conditions, R&A Chief Executive, Peter Dawson, said:
“Our Championship Committee pledged to review entry conditions and to assess how women golfers might compete on equal terms with men for a place in The Open. As a result, I am delighted that a qualification route has now been established for the best women players to gain access to the Championship, competing alongside men on the same courses and from the same tees.”
The new eligibility rules conform to two guiding principles set down by the Championship Committee:
- Entry to The Open should be based on playing ability irrespective of gender
- The strength and quality of the Championship and Qualifying fields should be maintained at the highest level
Female golfers eligible to compete in Regional Qualifying for the 2006 Open Championship at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake (20-23 July 2006) are the top five and ties from each of:
- 2005 Weetabix Women’s British Open Championship
- 2006 Kraft Nabisco Championship
- 2006 McDonald’s LPGA Championship
- 2006 US Women’s Open Championship
Elsewhere on the entry form, exemptions from Regional, Local Final and International Final Qualifying have been expanded to include the leading player in the first ten and ties, not exempt, from each of the 2006 Open de France and the 2006 Buick Championship. As before, exemption is also given to the leading player, not exempt, in each of the 2006 Smurfit European Open, the 2006 Barclays Scottish Open, the 2006 Western Open and the 2006 John Deere Classic where the “first ten and ties” requirement also applies.
The entry form can be downloaded from www.opengolf.com. Closing dates for entries are: International Final Qualifying (IFQ) Africa – 5 January 2006; Australasia – 19 January 2006; Asia – 23 March 2006 and all other entries – 1 June 2006. The Open Championship entry fee is unchanged at £110.
Source – R&A