Played in the 2015 Masters after finishing runner-up to Gunn Yang in the previous year’s US Amateur championship and this April was back at Augusta National thanks to his first PGA Tour victory the week before in the Valero Texas Open, where he beat Charley Hoffman by two after two closing rounds of 66.
He was in the event only because he won a six-man play-off in the Monday qualifier, making him the first to triumph on the circuit after coming through an earlier stage since Arjun Atwal in the 2010 Wyndham Championship.
Now he gets to appear in his first Open, having climbed into the world top 85 from 677th at the start of last year. He twice represented Canada in the Eisenhower Trophy world amateur team championship, finishing runners-up to the United States in 2014 when Spain’s Jon Rahm was the leading individual.
In March last year he led the Valspar Championship with a round to go, just ahead of Tiger Woods, Justin Rose and Brandt Snedeker. He finished joint 16th there, but in October was second to Cameron Champ at the Sanderson Farms Championship.