Here's How A 14-Year-Old (And Everyone Else) Qualified For The Masters

tianlang guan birdie masters celebration

One of the biggest stories of this year’s Masters is 14-year-old Tianlang Guan who shot an opening round 1-over 73 beating out many of golf’s biggest names.

But how did a young boy from China born in 1998 come to play in the world’s most exclusive golf tournament?

As it turns out, there are 20 different ways in which a golfer can come to receive an invitation to The Masters. Guan earned his invite as the reigning Asian amateur champion by winning the Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship last November.

19 players in this year's tournament have a lifetime invitation for having won The Masters previously

  • Angel Cabrera
  • Fred Couples
  • Ben Crenshaw
  • Tiger Woods
  • Trevor Immelman
  • Bubba Watson
  • Vijay Singh
  • Jose Maria Olazabal
  • Tom Watson
  • Ian Woosnam
  • Mike Weir
  • Craig Stadler
  • Charl Schwartzel
  • Zach Johnson
  • Bernhard Langer
  • Sandy Lyle
  • Mark O'Meara
  • Phil Mickelson
  • Larry Mize

Four golfers received an invitation for having won the U.S. Open in the last five years

  • Lucas Glover
  • Graeme McDowell
  • Rory McIlroy
  • Webb Simpson

Five golfers received an invitation for having won the British Open in the last five years

  • Stewart Cink
  • Darren Clarke
  • Ernie Els
  • Padraig Harrington
  • Louis Oosthuizen

Three golfers received an invitation for having won the PGA Championship in the last five years (Padraig Harrington and Rory McIlroy also qualify here)

  • Keegan Bradley
  • Martin Kaymer
  • Y.E. Yang

Three golfers received an invitation for having won The Players Championship in the last three years

  • K.J. Choi
  • Tim Clark
  • Matt Kuchar

The current U.S. Amateur champion and the runner-up automatically qualify

  • Steven Fox
  • Michael Weaver

The current British Amateur champion also receives an invitation

  • Alan Dunbar

As does the current Asian Amateur champion

  • Tianlang Guan

The current US Amateur Public Links champion receives an invitation

  • T. J. Vogel

As well as the current US Mid-Amateur champion

  • Nathan Smith

Players that finished in the Top 16 (including ties) in last year's Masters Tournament get to come back

  • Jim Furyk
  • Sergio Garcia
  • Peter Hanson
  • Hunter Mahan
  • Kevin Na
  • Ian Poulter
  • Justin Rose
  • Adam Scott
  • Lee Westwood

Players that finished in the top 8 (including ties) in the previous year's U.S. Open also automatically qualify

  • Jason Dufner
  • John Peterson
  • Michael Thompson
  • David Toms

Players that finished in the top 4 (including ties) in the previous year's British Open get to play in The Masters

  • Brandt Snedeker

So do players that finished in the top 4 of the previous year's PGA Championship

  • David Lynn
  • Carl Pettersson

The top 30 players on last year's PGA Tour money list are automatic entries

  • Ben Curtis
  • Luke Donald
  • Rickie Fowler
  • Robert Garrigus
  • John Huh
  • Dustin Johnson
  • Ryan Moore
  • Bo Van Pelt
  • Nick Watney
  • Scott Piercy
  • Steve Stricker

So do winners of qualified PGA Tour events in the previous 12 months

  • Brian Gay
  • Russell Henley
  • Martin Laird
  • Marc Leishman
  • John Merrick
  • D.A. Points
  • Ted Potter Jr.
  • Kevin Streelman

Players that qualified for the previous year's season-ending tour championship are in Augusta

  • John Senden

Being among the top 50 players in the final World Golf Ranking in the previous year is another qualification

  • Thomas Bjørn
  • George Coetzee
  • Nicolas Colsaerts
  • Jason Day
  • Francesco Molinari
  • Thorbjørn Olesen
  • Jamie Donaldson
  • Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano
  • Hiroyuki Fujita
  • Branden Grace
  • Bill Haas
  • Paul Lawrie
  • Matteo Manassero

And anybody that is among the top 50 players in the most recent World Golf Ranking and not otherwise qualified

  • Freddie Jacobson
  • Henrik Stenson
  • Richard Sterne

Finally, the Masters Committee can extend invitations to international players that are not otherwise qualified. This year, two players received such invites.

  • Ryo Ishikawa
  • Thaworn Wiratchant

Now check out more on Tianlang Guan

Meet The 14-Year-Old Chinese Phenom Who Outplayed The Pros At The Masters

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