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Huge news for potential Open qualifiers – the number of places at this year’s championship has been increased.

On Wednesday the R&A revealed a minimum of 16 golfers will now secure tickets to the Old Course, up from the previous 12.

It means four players will earn their spots from each of the four final qualifying venues: Fairmont St Andrews, Hollinwell, Prince’s and St Anne’s Old Links.

• LIV players allowed to play Open

• The 150th Open: The field in full

“We have flexibility to increase the number of places available at final qualifying and have determined that we can offer four at each event this year,” said Johnnie Cole-Hamilton, the R&A’s executive director of championships.

“We already know that there is a strong motivation among golfers to secure a place in the field for The 150th Open at St Andrews and so with more places now on offer for this historic championship, we are looking forward to watching players compete in four exciting events next week.”

The news came on the same day it was announced players taking part in the LIV Series will be permitted to compete if they have qualified or are exempt.

• Collin Morikawa addresses LIV rumours

• Brooks Koepka drops huge LIV hint

It follows a similar move by the USGA ahead of last week’s US Open at Brookline.

This year’s Open takes place from July 14-17 at the Old Course in St Andrews.

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