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Phil Mickelson arrived in Massachusetts in preparation for the US Open despite the controversy that has swirled around him and his decision to play in LIV Golf’s first tournament.
The 2022 US Open is set to take place at The Country Club in Brookline. Mickelson arrived from London after competing at the Centurion Golf Club in LIV Golf’s first 54-hole event. I have finished tied for 33rd and 10-over pair for the tournament.
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Now, it’s onto the US Open, which Mickelson has yet to win. He finished second or tied for second in 1999, 2002, 2004, 2006, 2009 and 2013. It’s the only major tournament he hasn’t won.
Mickelson and others who decided to play in LIV Golf will be allowed to play the US Open, the US Golf Association said last week.
“We pride ourselves in being the most open championship in the world and the players who have earned the right to compete in this year’s championship, both via exemption and qualifying, will have the opportunity to do so. Our field criteria were set prior to entries opening earlier this year and it’s not appropriate, nor fair to competitors, to change criteria once established,” the USGA said.
“Regarding players who may choose to play in London this week, we simply asked ourselves this question – should a player who had earned his way into the 2022 US Open, via our published field criteria, be pulled out of the field as a result of his decision to play in another event? And we ultimately decided that they should not.”
Mickelson didn’t rescind his PGA Tour membership as some of his fellow LIV Golf teammates.
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The USGA said their statement wasn’t a message of support for players participating in the PGA Tour’s rival league.
“Our decision regarding our field for the 2022 US Open should not be construed as the USGA supporting an alternative organizing entity, nor supporting any individual player actions or comments. Rather, it is simply a response to whether or not the USGA views playing in an alternative event, without the consent of their home tour, an offense that should disqualify them for the US Open.”
LIV Golf was the topic of conversation throughout last week because of Saudi Arabia’s funding of the league.
PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan had the last word Sunday in an interview on CBS during the RBC Canadian Open.
“I would ask any player that you have left, or any player that would ever consider leaving, have you ever had to apologize for being a member of the PGA Tour?” Monahan said.
Jim Nantz asked why there couldn’t be a room for both tours.
“Why do they need us so badly? Those players have chosen to sign multiyear, lucrative contracts to play in a series of exhibition matches against the same players over and over again. You look at that versus what we see here today,” Monahan said .
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He also called LIV Golf a series of exhibition tournaments.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.