Harrington and Fowler miss out by a shot at US Open qualifying

Bernie McGuire
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Harrington and Fowler miss out by a shot at US Open qualifying

Padraig Harrington (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)

Padraig Harrington and Rickie Fowler were among the big names to miss out on US Open qualifying on a dramatic final day in Columbus, Ohio.

Three-time Major winner Harrington resumed his second round in a tie for 16th with the top-16 advancing through to next week’s US Open at Torrey Pines. Harrington was at five-under with three holes to play on Tuesday but as it turned out, he would need one more birdie that never came after amateur Pierceson Coody birdied his closing hole to knock those at minus-five outside the qualifying mark.

That meant the end of the road not just for Harrington, who posted a four-under second round 68, but the likes of Keegan Bradley, Jason Dufner and Rickie Fowler, who despite shooting a second round six-under 66 on the Lakes Course, will now miss the US Open for the first time since 2010.

Fowler has three top-10s in the championship, including a tie for second in the 2014 U.S. Open at Pinehurst. Fowler also missed this year’s Masters, the product of a barren stretch of play that saw him drop as low as No. 128 in the World Ranking. He needed a special invitation from the PGA of America to get into the field at the PGA Championship. He has shown signs of improvement, however, with a T-8 at the PGA—which was his first top-10 on the PGA Tour since January 2020—and the T-11 at last week’s Memorial.

Meanwhile, Harrington’s barren run at the US Open continues having not qualified for the Major since 2013. He had every chance playing his closing three holes on Tuesday but failed to birdie the par-5 16th ahead of two closing pars to miss out by one.

Chez Reavie ensured his safe passage to the year’s third Major with his 12-under par two-round tally, one clear of South African Erik van Rooyen while Wyndham Clark, JT Poston, Martin Laird and Rafa Cabrera Bello all successfully booked their US Open tee-time.

The venue was one of nine across the U.S. playing host to a 36-hole qualifier for next week’s US Open at Torrey Pines. Fellow Irishman Seamus Power, with a misplaced US flag beside his name, withdrew from his qualifier in Atlanta after an opening 72.

Both Harrington and Power were then headed straight for South Carolina where they will tee-up in this week’s PGA Tour inaugural Palmetto Championship, replacing the Covid-19 cancelled Canadian Open. It will now leave former US Open winner Rory McIlroy and still reigning Open Champion Shane Lowry as the only Irish in next week’s 121st hosting of the US Open on the South course at Torrey Pines near San Diego.

MEANTIME — Masters champion Danny Willett should be fit to take his place in next week’s US Open despite being currently laid-up in hospital. Willett tweeted: “So the pain that kept me away most of Saturday night turned out to be appendicitis! Operation went well, also removing a hernia, add it to having Covid in March, wisdom tooth out in April .. all in all, a great year!”

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