Sterne, Van Rooyen qualify for Open Championship

Richard Sterne (AP)
Richard Sterne (AP)

Cape Town - South African duo Richard Sterne and Erik van Rooyen have earned their spots at next month's Open Championship at Royal Portrush Golf Club in Northern Ireland.

The duo were two of the four golfers who were in the Top 20 of the Race to Dubai rankings after the BMW International Open who hadn't already qualified for the year's final Major to be played from July 18-21.

Sterne, who is ranked 143rd in the world, currently sits 16th in the Race to Dubai rankings after his runner-up finish at the Abu Dhabi Championship and a T9 finish at the Trophee Hassan II.

The six-time European Tour winner will be making his eighth Open appearance after missing out last season.

Van Rooyen made his Major debut at Carnoustie last year with a Top 20 finish.

Van Rooyen, who is currently 84th in the world rankings, has been in fine form after his T8 at this year's PGA Championship and T43 at this month's US Open.

Sterne and Van Rooyen will join two-time Open champion Ernie Els (2002 & 2012), 2010 Open winner Louis Oosthuizen, Justin Harding, Zander Lombard, Shaun Norris and Brandon Stone in the 156-man field.

Meanwhile, 2011 Masters champion Charl Schwartzel, who qualified for this year's Open Championship, has withdrawn due to a wrist injury.

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