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British Open ends international 36-hole qualifying

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DOUG FERGUSON | October 28, 2013 01:03 AM EST | AP


SHANGHAI (AP) — The British Open is moving away from 36-hole qualifying, instead using 10 tour events from five continents to determine 32 spots in the field.

The only 36-hole qualifying that remains for golf's oldest championship will be 12 spots from four links courses in Britain just before the Open. Players who fail to get in the British Open off their own tours can enter those final qualifiers.

Royal & Ancient chief executive Peter Dawson says the reasons for the change include building more interest in the weeks leading up to the British Open. He also thinks a 72-hole tournament is a better test than 36-hole qualifying.

The new system will be called the "Open Qualifying Series," and it starts next month at the Australian Open.