It’s a holiday tradition like no other: Masters invitations are in the mail.
The majority of the field for the 70th Masters was set Monday when the final world golf ranking of the year was published. Invitations were extended to 99 players, although eight are former Masters champions who are not planning to compete, including Jack Nicklaus and Arnold Palmer.
Fourteen players will be making their Masters debut, including Sean O’Hair, Tour Championship winner Bart Bryant and Augusta resident Vaughn Taylor. They should be careful opening the mail this week, because the invitations are not trimmed in gold, much less green. Augusta Native Charles Howell will be making his 5th Masters appearance.
The final field will be determined March 27th, the Monday after The Players Championship. Players can still get in if they are in the top 50 in the world, or the top 10 on the current PGA Tour money list.
The Masters revamped its criteria in 2000 to no longer give PGA Tour winners an automatic invitation, instead rewarding consistent play through the world ranking the PGA Tour money list.