It feels like only yesterday that we were watching Shane Lowry kissing the Claret Jug on the 18th green after producing a sensational performance at Royal Portrush.
The man from the island of Ireland bested the field on The Open’s return to the County Antrim venue after a 68-year absence in July for his maiden major championship title.
But the long road to find his successor at The 149th Open begins in earnest next month when the first of 16 events that will make up The Open Qualifying Series for 2020 takes place.
The Emirates Australian Open, which is being played from December 5-8 at The Australian in Sydney, will be the first opportunity for players to secure their place at Royal St George’s.
Australia will be the first of 11 countries across five continents visited during The Open Qualifying Series, which offers players the chance to earn exemption for golf’s most international major.
The road to Royal St George’s
Introduced in 2014, The Open Qualifying Series is an international qualifying series that ensures players across the globe have an opportunity to earn their place in The Open field.
A minimum of 46 places will be available for golfers looking to book their place at Royal St George’s, where the contest for the Claret Jug is returning for the 15th time after a nine-year hiatus.
Events will take place around the world on the PGA Tour, the European Tour, the PGA Tour of Australasia, the Asian Tour, the Korean Tour, the Japan Golf Tour and the Sunshine Tour.
The Emirates Australian Open will once again be the starting point for the 2020 Open Qualifying Series, with three places up for grabs for players who are not already exempt.
“We know there is real excitement among fans at the prospect of The Open returning to Royal St George’s next year.” JohnnieCole-Hamilton, Executive Director of Championships at The R&A