As the US Open qualifiers began yesterday across America, Phil Mickelson offered his exemption to fellow American Rickie Fowler on social media.
A golf fan named Sarah Bean Smith tweeted the US Open account to suggest that as Mickelson no longer needed an exemption due to his win at the PGA Championship, he could hand it over to Fowler.
The six-time major champion responded to Sarah's tweet and said that he now "designated" his exception to Fowler and he also included that his special invitation was "no longer necessary."
I hereby designate my (no longer necessary) exemption to Rickie.— Phil Mickelson (@PhilMickelson) June 8, 2021
Of course, exemptions can't just be passed on as easy as that, but it shows what an incredible turn of events occurred at Kiawah Island as Lefty will have probably needed to win the tournament had he not received an exemption.
Fowler, who is ranked at number 87 in the world, is currently playing in the US Open qualifiers in America. He is competing in the qualifiers at Brookside Golf and Country Club and The Lakes Golf and Country Club in Ohio.
The five-time PGA Tour winner is one of 700 players across the United States attempting to qualify on what is described as "The Longest Day" in golf.
The 32-year-old did not get off to a great start at Brookside Golf and Country Club as he shot 1-over-par in a weather-delayed round. He will need to vastly improve in the second round if he is to qualify for the US Open at Torrey Pines.
Golf fans gave their reactions to Mickelson's offer to Fowler:
Phil, why do you no longer require an exemption? Did you recently win some sort of event that qualified you for the US Open?— Ryan A (@raiderfanryan) June 8, 2021
This is actually a really good idea. And if Rickie happens to make it through sectional qualifying, give it to crowd favorite @harryhiggs1991— Old Muppet In The Balcony (@OldBalcony) June 8, 2021
I imagine Phil walks into the commissioner’s office and lays down an fake Jersey, and say for Ricky. With slow music in the back ground— Layne ward (@Layners517) June 8, 2021
I mean he would have his own exemptions if he could win something. That’s harsh maybe calm down on commercials— Steve Tomlin (@SteveTomlin54) June 8, 2021
you're the man, Phil. this is why we love you.— Tropical Boltage (@Trop_Boltage91) June 8, 2021