One of the most obvious pieces of expected golf news became official on Friday morning (AEST) as Tiger Woods received a special exemption into the 2024 US Open.

The 15-time major champ’s invite – and acceptance – was announced by the USGA in a press release.

“The US Open, our national championship, is a truly special event for our game and one that has helped define my career,” Woods said in the release. “I’m honoured to receive this exemption and could not be more excited for the opportunity to compete in this year’s US Open, especially at Pinehurst, a venue that means so much to the game.”

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Woods has won nine USGA championships during his illustrious career dating back to his amateur days. In addition to winning the US Open three times (2000, 2002 and 2008), Woods also won three consecutive US Junior Amateur Championships (1991-1993) and three consecutive US Amateur Championships (1994-1996).

This is the first time the 48-year-old Woods hasn’t been exempt from qualifying for the US Open since making his championship debut as an amateur at Shinnecock Hills in 1995. He last played in the US Open in 2020.

Woods has lifetime exemptions into the Masters and PGA Championship as a past champion, and can play in the Open Championship until he is 60. Winning the US Open, however, only comes with a 10-year exemption. And Tiger’s five-year exemption into the US Open for winning the 2019 Masters expired last year.

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Woods joins a list of legendary golfers who have received special exemptions from the USGA that includes Jack Nicklaus (seven times), Arnold Palmer (five times) and Tom Watson (five times).

Woods finished 60th at the Masters last month, his only full tournament of the year thus far. After, he said he planned to play in all four majors this year.

The 2024 US Open will be held June 13-16 at Pinehurst No.2, a site where Woods finished runner-up in 2005 and T-3 in 1999.