USGA accepts 2,234 entries for inaugural Four-Ball

The third hole of The Olympic Club's Lake Course in San Francisco.

JOHNS CREEK, Ga. – A total of 2,234 teams have signed up for the USGA's inaugural U.S. Amateur Four-Ball Championship at The Olympic Club in San Francisco, the USGA announced Tuesday morning.

Replacing the U.S. Amateur Public Links in 2014, the two-man team event will be played May 2-6 on Olympic's Lake and Ocean courses.

“We are pleased that nearly 4,500 players will compete in qualifying for the inaugural U.S. Amateur Four-Ball Championship,” Daniel B. Burton, the USGA's vice president and Championship Committee chairman, said in a news release. “The four-ball format is exciting for amateur golf, and we are confident that this championship will continue to grow in popularity for both players and fans.”

Three teams already have received their invitations to the top 128 because both players are ranked inside the top 400 in the World Amateur Golf Ranking:

  • Junior stars Sam Burns and Austin Connelly;
  • Patrick Christovich and Garrett Rank;
  • SMU's tandem of Bryson Dechambeau and Austin Smotherman.

To be eligible to compete, a golfer must carry a handicap index of no more than 5.4, with no age restrictions. Players can partner with whomever they wish, regardless of club, state or country. Substitutions are no longer permitted, as the entry period has closed.

According to the release, teams from all 50 states, the District of Columbia and 17 foreign countries have entered. Qualifying to make the field of 128 teams will begin Wednesday and continue through March 31 at 51 U.S. sites.

The format: Each player plays his own ball throughout the round, and each team's score is determined by its better-ball score on each hole. That will be the case for the 36 stroke-play holes, followed by the match-play portion that will feature the top 32 teams.

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