The PGA Tour invites keep rolling in for Guan Tianlang.
Just three days after missing the cut at the HP Byron Nelson Championship, the 14-year-old from China has accepted a sponsor exemption into next week’s Memorial Tournament. It will be his fourth PGA Tour start in the past seven weeks.
At 14, Guan became not only the youngest Masters participant in history, but easily the youngest to make the cut. He tied for 58th.
Two weeks later, he finished last among those who made the cut at the Zurich Classic, and last week he shot rounds of 70-77 to miss the cut at TPC Las Colinas. The Monday after the Memorial, Guan will compete in a U.S. Open sectional qualifier.
Each year, the winners of both the U.S. Amateur and British Amateur receive invitations into the Memorial. Because the Asia-Pacific Amateur champion also earns a spot in the Masters, Nicklaus said in a statement Monday that he is hopeful his own tournament will follow suit and “make this a standard policy with our exemptions.”
“I have had the fortunate pleasure of spending time with Guan and his family, and I have found him to be mature beyond his years and very passionate about his development in the game,” Nicklaus said. “The performance of this young 14-year-old – who, mind you, is just an eighth-grader – in making the cut at the Masters and then in New Orleans was fantastic. … For the growth of the game internationally, he is a role model for all aspiring Asian amateurs, as well as young boys and girls around the globe, so it is only appropriate to give him another opportunity to compete on a world-class stage.”