The R&A's new qualification series for the Open Championship doled out the first three spots in the field at Royal Liverpool at the conclusion of the Emirates Australian Open.
John Senden, Rhein Gibson and Bryden Macpherson were the highest finishers in the field at Royal Sydney not already exempt into the Open Championship, giving them entry into the game's oldest championship.
Senden, who finished solo third, will make his eighth appearance in the Open. Gibson and Macpherson, both heralded amateurs, will be making their first and second Open Championship starts, respectively. Gibson, you might recall, gained fame for shooting 55 in May 2012 at the 6,698-yard, par-71 layout at River Oaks Country Club in Oklahoma.
The Open Qualifying Series, which begins this year, replaces the series of International Final Qualifying events held around the world months ahead of the Open Championship. The new qualifying series offers spots in the field through 14 events in nine countries, spread across five continents. A total of 44 spots are up for grabs, including 32 in pro tournaments around the world and another dozen through the customary four 36-hole qualifying tournaments held in Great Britain just ahead of the Open Championship.