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Ben Griffin qualifies for the Memorial Tournament with closing 65 at RBC Canadian Open

3 Min Read

Aon Better Decisions


    Written by Kevin Prise @PGATOURKevin

    Editor's note: Robert MacIntyre has withdrawn from the Memorial Tournament presented by Workday. Davis Thompson will fill MacIntyre's spot in the Aon Swing 5 for the Memorial.

    ANCASTER, Ontario – Ben Griffin isn’t quite sure what tomorrow holds. It’s a logistical challenge that he embraces.

    After finishing runner-up to Robert MacIntyre by one stroke at the RBC Canadian Open, Griffin was beaming from ear to ear as he walked toward the scoring area and hugged his girlfriend Dana. Even though he’s still chasing his first TOUR title, Griffin relished the lively atmosphere playing in Sunday’s final group at Hamilton Golf & Country Club – he made three consecutive birdies on Nos. 15-17 to put some heat on the Scotsman. Both players made par on the final hole; MacIntyre won at 16 under, one clear of Griffin.

    Not only does Griffin move from No. 85 to No. 54 in the FedExCup standings, but he clinches a spot in the Memorial Tournament presented by Workday via the Aon Swing 5.

    The top five FedExCup points earners across the Myrtle Beach Classic, Charles Schwab Challenge and RBC Canadian Open (not otherwise exempt) qualified for the Memorial via the Aon Swing 5. Griffin finished third in this series of events; also qualifying were MacIntyre (No. 1), Charles Schwab Challenge winner Davis Riley (No. 2), Mrytle Beach Classic winner Chris Gotterup (No. 4) and Victor Perez (No. 5), who took third place at the RBC Canadian Open.

    Davis Riley wins Charles Schwab Challenge

    The Aon Next 10 for the Memorial (top 10 on the 2024 FedExCup standings, not otherwise exempt) was also finalized at the RBC Canadian Open. The top nine on the standings remained unchanged; Taylor Pendrith moved from No. 11 to No. 10 with a T21 finish in Canada, but the Canadian was previously exempt for the Memorial as a current-season tournament winner at THE CJ CUP Byron Nelson.

    (The Aon Next 10 category is slotted above the Aon Swing 5 in the qualification criteria; players in the Aon Next 10 cannot also hold spots in the Aon Swing 5.)

    As he met the media shortly after signing his card early Sunday evening, Griffin’s mind was still racing. He is scheduled to compete at Monday’s 36-hole U.S. Open Final Qualifying event at Cherry Hill Club in southern Ontario, roughly an hour’s drive from Hamilton Golf & Country Club. The top 60 in the Official World Golf Ranking as of June 10 will also qualify for the U.S. Open; Griffin was projected to move to No. 70 with his runner-up at the RBC Canadian Open, now within striking distance of moving inside the top 60 at the Memorial, but not a sure thing. The North Carolina native has ample childhood memories at Pinehurst with his dad, and he intends to cement a tee time in two weeks at Pinehurst No. 2 via “Golf’s Longest Day.”

    Griffin also had previously scheduled an eye appointment for Tuesday in northeast Florida (a short drive from his residence in St. Simons Island, Georgia) to address five retinal holes (four in his left eye, one in his right eye). Although there’s a chance he could fly back to the Southeast and make his eye appointment before traveling to Ohio for the Memorial, the odds are that rescheduling the appointment will be the course of action. (He laughed while analyzing this decision during Sunday’s post-round interview, sharing a grin with his girlfriend Dana, who was also watching the interview).

    Nonetheless, these are good problems to have. Griffin matched his career-best TOUR finish with an electric final-round 65 at the RBC Canadian Open, coming oh-so-close to catching MacIntyre on the final hole – and he played his way into a Signature Event as well.

    Ben Griffin’s interview after Round 3 of RBC Canadian

    Kevin Prise is an associate editor for the PGA TOUR. He is on a lifelong quest to break 80 on a course that exceeds 6,000 yards and to see the Buffalo Bills win a Super Bowl. Follow Kevin Prise on Twitter.

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