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‘Rushed’ Sergio fails to qualify for Open; Rose in

By admin Jul3,2024

Sergio Garcia, after complaining to officials for being put on the clock for slow play in his final qualifier for the Open Championship, again failed to make the field for the year’s final major Tuesday.

The 44-year-old member of LIV Golf came up two strokes short after shooting 71 and 70 over two rounds at Liverpool’s West Lancashire Golf Club, one of four sites hosting final qualifying Tuesday. His score of 3 under tied for sixth, with only four advancing from West Lancashire to Royal Troon, where The Open will take place July 18-21.

“I come here and I try my hardest to get into The Open,” Garcia said. “It would be nice to make The Open my 100th major, but it was tough conditions and sometimes things don’t go your way. … I tried everything that I could and that’s all I can ask myself for.”

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Garcia was caught on video complaining to R&A rules officials after being put on the clock, saying he was being slowed down by fans on the property.

“The marshals were trying to do the best job they could do, but obviously, we had to stop pretty much on every tee for two to three minutes to hit our tee shots because people were walking in front of the tee and on the fairway,” Garcia said.

“Unless we wanted to start hitting people, we couldn’t hit. I don’t think they took that into account, and that was unfortunate. It made us rush.”

At one point, Garcia was heard telling officials, “It’s OK, don’t worry. You’re always right, we’re wrong.”

Amateur Matthew Dodd-Berry and Sam Horsfield, both of England, shot 6 under, and will be joined at The Open by England’s Daniel Brown and Japan’s Masahiro Kawamura, who finished 5 under.

Garcia has never won The Open. He came closest when he lost to Ireland’s Padraig Harrington in a playoff in 2007; he later tied for second in 2014. Garcia’s lone major win was the 2017 Masters.

Veteran Justin Rose and LIV Golf’s Abraham Ancer were the notable golfers to make the final field at Burnham & Berrow in Somerset. LIV Golf’s Anirban Lahiri did not advance.

Rose has been exempt for the better part of two decades and most recently won the AT&T Pebble Beach a year ago, but this year has been a struggle for the 43-year-old Englishman, who dropped out of the top 50 in the world ranking. He figured his best option was 36 holes of qualifying in the U.K.

“You kind of take it for granted,” Rose said. “As you get a little older, things get a little harder. It makes you appreciate how special The Open is.”

Rose was co-medalist at Burnham and Berrow with Dominic Clemons of England, who played college golf last year at Stetson and recently signed with Alabama. Ancer and Sweden’s Charlie Lindh advanced from a three-man playoff, with Lahiri making bogey on the first extra hole.

Jack McDonald, who grew up about 15 minutes away from Royal Troon, won a playoff to get the final spot out of Dundonald Links and join Sam Hutsby, Angel Hidalgo and Irish amateur Liam Noland.

At Royal Cinque Ports, Matthew Southgate led four qualifiers, two of them Spanish amateurs Jaime Montojo Fernandez and Luis Masaveu, who will be competing in the European team championship ahead of the 152nd Open Championship. The fourth was Elvis Smylie.

That puts the Open field at 149 players, with 10 more spots available — two from the John Deere Classic, three from the Scottish Open and five European tour players who are among the top 20 in the Race to Dubai after this week.

Field Level Media and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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