Guan Tianlang will put his missed cut at the Byron Nelson Championship behind him and swing into action via a sponsor exemption at Jack Nicklaus’ Memorial Tournament next week.
The 14-year-old Chinese prodigy who made history in April as the youngest golfer to play and make the cut at the Masters has had a busy spring, what with that stint at Augusta, playing all four rounds of last month’s Zurich Classic of New Orleans, and making a start at last week’s Byron Nelson tilt. Now, he’ll tee it up on the Muirfield Village Golf Club course that Jack built.
“I am very excited to accept the invitation to play at the Memorial Tournament,” Guan, ranked 78th in the World Golf Amateur Golf Rankings, said in a statement. “I have very high respect to Mr. Nicklaus, not just as a golf legend, but also as a great person...actively involved in the development of golf in China, and junior golf development worldwide....My parents and I got the chance to meet him in person at the Masters, and that was one of the highlights of my week at Augusta National. I appreciate a lot the Memorial Tournament for having me there, and it is going to be a great week.”
Nicklaus welcomed the youngster to Ohio.
“The Memorial Tournament has been a strong supporter of amateur golf since its inception, and each year the winners of both the U.S. Amateur and British Amateur are always invited to participate,” said the tourney founder and host. “With the Asia Pacific Amateur Championship becoming such an important event in the game of golf, and with the winner earning an invitation to The Masters Tournament and a spot in International Final Qualifying for the British Open, the Captains Club thought it was only appropriate to offer an invitation to the Memorial Tournament. We hope that in the future, we can make this a standard policy with our exemptions.”
Tiger Woods will defend his Memorial title at the tourney, which runs from May 30-June 2.