Why this LIV Golf player received a special invite to PGA Championship!

LIV Golf player Paul Casey received a special invite into the PGA Championship this week. 

Lara Kuipers's picture
Tue, 16 May 2023
Why this LIV Golf player received a special invite to PGA Championship!

LIV Golf's Paul Casey has received a special invitation into the PGA Championship at Oak Hill Country Club this week for the second major championship of 2023. 

As the Saudi-backed series has gone on, it has become increasingly more difficult for its players to qualify into the majors. 

The most recent evidence of this is with Talor Gooch and the upcoming US Open, and all the drama that's followed. 

After a rule change, Gooch, 31, is no longer exempt into the June major in California. It's resulted in many Phil Mickelson rants on Twitter, defending his fellow LIV Golf member. 

Related: LIV Golf's Phil Mickelson SHADES USGA CEO and PGA Tour commissioner 

However, Gooch is one of the 18 LIV Golf players in the field this week in Rochester, New York for the PGA Championship. As is Mickelson. 

Also a part of that contingent is Casey, despite the Englishman not initially qualifying for the major. 

However, the PGA of America, who runs the tournament, have the discretion to send out special invites to players to meet the field requirements, and it appears as though Casey has made that list. 

The current Crushers GC member has historically done very well at the PGA Championship, with a tie for second in 2020 and a tie for fourth in 2021. He was unable to play in 2022 due to an injury, which may have played a role in being brought back for 2023. 

PGA of America CEO Seth Waugh told The Times that Casey's special invitation criteria could be put under "good for our event."

Waugh added: 

"He has been hurt a bit, but he has performed really well in majors when healthy and he is a former Ryder Cupper and someone who we think has done a lot for the game. We think he adds to the field. I would put the criterion as 'good for our event' because he's someone who has contributed to the game in a positive way."

The CEO also referred back to Casey's solid major championship history and Ryder Cup involvement when speaking about why the LIV Golf member received a special invitation. 

Despite not winning in a major championship, Casey has notched top-10s at each of the four, including his runner-up at the 2020 PGA Championship at TPC Harding Park. 

He's also played in five Ryder Cups, representing Team Europe. The biennial event is administrated by both Ryder Cup Europe and the PGA of America. 

Casey, 45, joined LIV Golf in 2022 following a series of withdrawals due to his lingering injuries. As a result, his future involvement in the Ryder Cup does not currently seem likely. 

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