USGA receives over 9000 entries for US Open

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USGAFAR HILLS, N.J.  – The U.S. Golf Association has accepted 9,052 entries for the U.S. Open at Pebble Beach (Calif.) Golf Links, including entries from the 63 golfers who are currently fully exempt into the field.

The number of entries for the 110th championship, to be contested June 17-20, is the second-highest ever, just shy of the 9,086 entries received for the 2009 U.S. Open at Bethpage State Park’s Black Course in Farmingdale, N.Y.

The USGA received entries from golfers in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and 68 foreign countries, including 783 applicants who listed foreign addresses.

Nine past champions are fully exempt from having to qualify for the upcoming championship. They are: Angel Cabrera (2007), Michael Campbell (2005), Ernie Els (1994, 1997), Jim Furyk (2003), Lucas Glover (2009), Retief Goosen (2001, 2004), Geoff Ogilvy (2006), Tom Watson (1982) and Tiger Woods (2000, 2002, 2008).

Ninety-five percent of the entries were received online, including 662 on the last day applications were accepted (April 28). The USGA received 118 entries online in the final hour. Brent Hurt, 30, of Lockhart, Texas, submitted his entry online at 4:59:47 p.m., just 13 seconds before the deadline of 5 p.m. EDT. Joseph Saladino, a 30-year-old amateur from Cold Spring Harbor, N.Y., was the first entrant on March 3.

The youngest golfer to enter was 10-year-old Mick Huffman of Maurice, La. The oldest applicant was 81-year-old Harris Moore Jr. of Los Angeles. To be eligible, a player must have a handicap index no higher than 1.4, or be a professional.

Local qualifying, which will be played over 18 holes at 111 sites, will take place between May 7-20.

Sectional qualifying, played over 36 holes, will be conducted at two sites (in Japan and England) on May 24 and 13 sites in the United States on June 7. A total of 171 applicants chose an international site (43 Japan, 128 England). It is the sixth consecutive year that the USGA has offered two international sectional qualifiers.

The number of fully exempt golfers will increase with the inclusion of the top 50 players from the World Golf Ranking, the top 10 money leaders on the 2010 PGA Tour and the top five money leaders on the 2010 European PGA Tour, all as of May 24. The winner of The Players Championship (May 6-9) also receives an exemption, as does any multiple winner of official PGA Tour co-sponsored events between June 21, 2009, and June 13, 2010.

A list of the 63 golfers who are already fully exempt into the 2010 U.S. Open follows: (a-amateur)

Stephen Ames

a-Byeong-Hun An

Ricky Barnes

Matt Bettencourt

Angel Cabrera

Michael Campbell

Paul Casey

Stewart Cink

Tim Clark

Luke Donald

Jason Dufner

David Duval

Simon Dyson

Ernie Els

Ross Fisher

Fred Funk

Jim Furyk

Sergio Garcia

Brian Gay

Lucas Glover

Retief Goosen

Soren Hansen

Padraig Harrington

Yuta Ikeda

Trevor Immelman

Ryo Ishikawa

Dustin Johnson

Zach Johnson

Martin Kaymer

Jerry Kelly

Soren Kjeldsen

Matt Kuchar

Marc Leishman

Justin Leonard

Hunter Mahan

Steve Marino

a-Ben Martin

Ross McGowan

Rory McIlroy

Phil Mickelson

Francesco Molinari

Ryan Moore

Kevin Na

Geoff Ogilvy

Sean O’Hair

Kenny Perry

Ian Poulter

John Rollins

Rory Sabbatini

John Senden

Michael Sim

Heath Slocum

Henrik Stenson

Steve Stricker

David Toms

Scott Verplank

Nick Watney

Tom Watson

Mike Weir

Lee Westwood

Oliver Wilson

Tiger Woods

Y.E. Yang