US Open: Leonard and Casey secure Pinehurst spots
Joy and disappointment were shared in equal measure this past Monday as Justin Leonard and Paul Casey were among the players who qualified for the US Open, while Mike Weir and Trevor Immelman narrowly missed out.
Leonard carded a five-under 137 at the Brookside Golf and Country Club in Columbus to secure his place in the big event. The 41-year-old will now pack his bags and head off to Pinehurst, North Carolina, ready for the June 12-15 tournament, mentally and physically confident.
"It is nice because it's been three or four years since I've been in the US Open," Leonard said. "It will be fun playing in Pinehurst; it's one of my favourites."
Casey is also making travel plans for Pinehurst having booked his place in the tournament alongside 16 other qualifiers, including the likes of Noh Seung-yul, Bo Van Pelt, Aaron Baddeley and Robert Allenby.
However, there will also be some notable absences. Mike Weir, winner of the US Masters in 2003, missed the cut alongside 2008 US Masters winner Trevor Immelman, meaning the pair must settle for watching the event unfold from their sofas.
Other players who were unsuccessful in their attempts to qualify on Monday included KJ Choi, Ryo Ishikawa and Camilo Villegas.
David Duval, Sang-Moon Bae and Tim Clark contested in the qualifying tournament in Memphis but failed to advance, with JB Holmes and David Toms the big winners as they both earned a place in the US Open.
Former World Golf Championship winner Kevin Sutherland came through an exciting qualifying battle in San Francisco, while former US junior Amateur Champion Cory Whitsett came through to qualify in Houston.