'We Have No Plans For Any Additional Exemptions' - The R&A Responds To Norman

Following Greg Norman's desire to play at the 150th Open Championship, The R&A have given him a firm answer

Norman stares
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Just a day after Greg Norman announced his intentions to play at St Andrews in July, a spokesman from The R&A has now told Australian Golf Digest (opens in new tab), via a statement, that: “The entry terms and conditions for The Open stipulate that a champion must be aged 60 or under or have won the championship in the previous 10 years to be exempt from qualifying. That remains the case for The 150th Open and we have no plans for any additional exemptions.”

As a result of The R&A's stance, it now means that the only way Norman can possibly participate in The Open is through qualifying, something that is unlikely considering he hasn't played a round of golf that offers ranking points since 2012.

Norman hits a shot

The last tournament Norman played in that offered world ranking points was the 2012 Australian PGA Championship

(Image credit: Getty Images)

A two-time winner of the tournament, Norman had stated on Friday that: “I’m filling out my entry form now; I think I’m going." He then went on to add: “I think I can still get in. It’s the 150th (opens in new tab). I’m a past Open Champion. I love St Andrews. If there's a moment in time that I would consider going back and teeing off one last time, maybe this is it."

For Norman though, he falls seven years outside the exemption age cut-off for past champions, which is set at 60. Following the announcement from The R&A, it is unlikely that we will see 'The Shark' at the Old Course in July. However, there is a strong chance that we will see him in the UK a month prior to The Open, when the newly announced Saudi-backed LIV Golf Invitational Series (opens in new tab) heads to Centurion Club on the 9th - 11th June.

Norman, who is the CEO of LIV Golf Investments, has announced that it will be an eight event Series with a gigantic $255 million purse. As of writing, only a handful of players (opens in new tab) have requested to compete in the events that will run at the same time as PGA and DP World Tour tournaments.

Garrigus hits and iron

World No. 1043 was the first player to request permission from the PGA Tour to play in the Series

(Image credit: Getty Images)

The Series has caused huge controversy, with players like Rory McIlroy, Tiger Woods (opens in new tab) and Jon Rahm amongst those who have voiced their support for the PGA Tour and not Norman's LIV Golf Invitational. Along with the players, both the PGA Tour commissioner, Jay Monahan, and DP World Tour chief, Keith Pelley have both had their say on the matter.

Monahan has stated on numerous occasions that those who do jump to the rival Series will receive bans and that those who want to play in the Series should: "Walk out the door now." (opens in new tab)

According to a report in The Telegraph (opens in new tab), the DP World Tour has also issued a plea to its players to stay loyal to the status quo, warning that those jumping ship to the new Saudi-backed LIV Golf Series will jeopardise the future of the circuit (opens in new tab) and, in particular, its “heritage events”.

Matt Cradock
Matt Cradock

Matt studied Sports Journalism at Southampton Solent University, graduating in 2019. Now a freelance writer for Golf Monthly and the PGA, he covers all aspects of the game, from Tour news to equipment testing and buyers’ guides. Taking up the game at the age of six, Matt currently holds a handicap of 3 and despite not having a hole in one…yet, he has had two albatrosses. His favourite player is Rory McIlroy, despite nearly being struck by his second shot at the 17th during the 2015 BMW PGA Championship.