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What Are The Best Amateur Golf Tournaments To Play In?

What Are The Best Amateur Golf Tournament To Play In

You have been golfing a while, your handicap is dropping, and you feel it’s time to take the next step in your amateur golf career. Since the PGA Tour is not quite knocking on your door yet, the question to ask yourself is: Which amateur golf tournaments should you enter in order to up your game? If you are a serious amateur golfer, there are a couple of tournaments you must place on your calendar. Consider applying for these competitions and gain real-life experience at a highly competitive level. It is important to note that you must hold a certain handicap to qualify but these tournaments will be sure to up your game, open your eyes to serious talent, and also act as a great stepping stone into the world of professional golf.

U.S Amateur

The U.S Amateur is the biggest of all the amateur golf tournaments in the entire world of golf. The entry fee is not exorbitant, and you have to make it through a 36-hole qualifier to take part in the match-play aspect of the event. You must have an established handicap of 2.4 or lower to enter. The top 64 scores after stroke play will be eligible for the match-play competition, and the winner will receive an exemption into the U.S Open and The Masters in Augusta. You can sign up for the tournament through the United States Golf Association website.

Western Amateur

The Western Amateur is open to all amateur golfers with a handicap of 3 or less. The entry fee can be found by visiting the Western Amateur website. The field is limited to 156 golfers, and players must play 36 holes of stroke play before the first elimination whittles the field down to 44 players. Those 44 golfers play another 36 holes of stroke play before the second elimination knocks it down to just 16 players. Those 16 amateurs play rounds of match play before the winner is decided. The top amateur golfer receives an invitation to play in the PGA Tour Western Open, making this one of the country’s leading amateur golf tournaments.

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Northeast Amateur Invitational Golf Tournament

The Northeast Amateur Invitational was named the “Masters of Amateur Golf” by notable golf writer Ron Balicki. Northeast Amateur recently joined six other amateur tournaments to create the Elite Amateur Series. This points race will allow the series winner and other top finishers the chance to receive PGA Tour and USGA exemptions. Tournament play is in twosomes with 18 holes daily over four days, with the cut after 54 holes. Participants are invited based on their competitive record and World Amateur Ranking, with priority given to champions of other amateur tournaments.

Pacific Coast Amateur Championship

The Pacific Coast Amateur is open to any amateur golfer with a verifiable handicap index with the United States Golf Association or other recognized association. Held at the Columbia Edgewater Country Club in Portland, Oregon, the tournament was first held at the San Francisco Golf Club at The Presidio in 1901, making it one of the oldest amateur golf tournaments in North America. The entry fee is $275, with the field open to 84 players.

Sunnehanna Amateur

The Sunnehanna Amateur is considered one of the elite amateur tournaments in both the U.S. and the world, boasting amongst its former contestants like Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus, and Tiger Woods. The tournament invites NCAA, USGA Amateur Events, and Walker Cup participants, as well as players who rank in the top 150 of the Golfweek/Sagarin Amateur Rankings and top rank juniors and champions of other amateur tournaments. The Sunnehanna Amateur also conducts an 18-hole qualifier, with the top four players earning a spot in the tournament. The entry fee is $325. There are financial assistance options for those who qualify.

South Beach International Amateur

The South Beach International Amateur Tournament allows all top amateurs to apply. The entry fee is $410 and covers the cost of trophies, player pamphlets, prizes and gifts, greens and cart fees, range balls, lunch on tournament days, and other assorted expenses. Held at the Miami Beach Golf Club, the South Beach International is within arm’s reach of the finest beaches and world-famous nightlife, making it a particularly appealing amateur tournament for many.

Myrtle Beach World Amateur

With over 3,000 players participating annually, the Myrtle Beach World Amateur is the world’s largest amateur golf tournament. As the only tournament in the world to allow players of any ability level to join in the fun, it’s also one of the most inclusive tournaments, with 11 divisions and handicaps ranging from 0.4 to 40.4. Every golfer gets the chance to play at four separate courses over the week and play a fifth and final round championship playoff on the last day of the tournament. The early entry fee is $649 and includes a gift bag containing various golf products and entry for up to $25,000 in prize drawings.

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8 comments

  1. Hi, I’m an almost 25 year old male who would love to play in Amateur Golf tournaments and work my way up to play with the pros one day, but I’ve never been to college or played in any tournaments a day in my life. I was wondering if there was a way for me to be able become eligible to play in any Amateur tournament without any experience (I’ve played at local country clubs, just not tournaments)?

  2. You will need to establish a handicap first. In order to do that, you will have to join the men’s club at a golf course of your choosing. This is necessary because they are a business that operates according to the golf handicap and information network (GHIN) guidelines. Basically, your membership pays the annual fees that GHIN requires as well as what the club wants to make you eligible for their tournaments, special discounts, etc. If membership is too pricey and all you want is the GHIN, then some clubs offer that as well. The final step is to turn in at least 6 rounds of golf which will be used to determine your handicap. You will now be eligible to play in Amateur tournaments! Just so long as your handicap meets their requirements of course…

  3. Now that the Golf Channel has ended . Is there another tour for seniors out there that is handicapped?

  4. My son plays division 1 college golf and his coach wants him to play bigger tournaments this summer. How do you find the highest ranked tournaments that are open to someone outside of the home state? Or, do you have a recommendation of tournaments that a junior should be playing in this summer to toughen up his game and compete with different players and on different courses.

  5. If your son is playing Division 1 golf, his coach should know all of the best amateur golf tournaments.

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