12 Biggest Names Missing The 2023 US Open

 Tiger Woods heads the list of players missing the 2023 US Open
Tiger Woods heads the list of players missing the 2023 US Open

As happens this time of year yet another Major rolls around pretty quickly, and it's the third one of the year as the best golfers on the planet head out to Los Angeles Country Club for the 2023 US Open.

It'll be the 123rd US Open that will take place in Los Angeles from June 15-18 where the likes of Rory McIlroy, Scottie Scheffler and Jon Rahm will go up against Brooks Koepka, Dustin Johnson and Phil Mickelson.

Given the recent PGA Tour merger with the Saudi Arabia Public Investment Fund (PIF) and the question marks now over LIV Golf, there's even more layers of intrigue going even beyond what is usually the toughest Major of the lot.

But not all the biggest and brightest names will be there, including arguably the greatest of all time, a couple of young guns, a controversial LIV omission and three past champions who feel like they won the wrong Major.

Tiger Woods

Tiger Woods pain Masters

After also missing the PGA Championship, it was no surprise when news broke of Tiger Woods missing the 2023 US Open as he continues to recover from ankle surgery.

The 15-time Major champion has shown us some glimpses of still being able to play, but simply being able to walk four rounds of golf continues to be a difficult task due to his injuries.

It's hoped that the latest fusion surgery he's had may help give him one last chance to challenge at a Major, and judging by the way he battled to make his 23rd straight cut at the Masters if his body is in any way able he's still got the desire to give it a go.

Will Zalatoris

Will Zalatoris watches his shot from the 16th tee during the first round of THE PLAYERS Championship at Stadium Course at TPC Sawgrass

At the other end of his career but in a similar situation with injuries, Will Zalatoris will miss another Major as he recovers from back surgery.

The 26-year-old was a real threat in the Majors last year, with back-to-back runners-up spots at the PGA Championship and US Open - just being pipped at the latter by Matt Fitzpatrick.

It's hoped he'll come back as good as before as, despite his putting, he still seems capable of landing a big one.

Talor Gooch

Talor Gooch at the 2023 LIV Golf Adelaide event

One of the more controversial storylines, two-time LIV Golf winner Talor Gooch misses out despite seemingly qualifying by way of making the Tour Championship at the end of last season.

He claims the USGA retrospectively changed their rules and excluded him because although he qualified he was not eligible to play in the Tour Championship because of his suspension for joining LIV.

It meant he needed a strong PGA Championship to have any hope of getting in but he missed the cut at Oak Hill and will now miss out on a trip to LA.

Michael Block

Michael Block at the 2023 PGA Championship

The Cinderella story from the PGA Championship, Michael Block's exploits at Oak Hill seem a long time ago now - with records falling, a hole-in-one and PGA Tour invites crowning a feel-good story golf badly needed.

He looked to go one further when attempting to qualify for the US Open, as did his teenage son, but both missed out and we'll not get the chance to see how he'd get on in another Major - for now!

Lucas Glover

Lucas Glover poses with the trophy after winning the 2021 John Deere Classic

There's no lifetime exemption for winning the US Open - just a 10-year one, and that means 2009 champion at Bethpage Black Lucas Glover had to go through qualifying.

It ended in heartbreak as well for the 43-year-old as he missed a tap-in of a putt during a playoff in qualifying in Ohio to end his hopes of playing in Los Angeles.

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Graeme McDowell

Graeme McDowell poses on putting green

Graeme McDowell claimed the 2010 US Open title at Pebble Beach so his decade of exemptions has also run out, and he too tried his hand at qualifying only to come up short.

G-Mac played alongside fellow LIV Golf player Sergio Garcia in Dallas, but while the Spaniard played his way in, the Northern Irishman came up one shot short of a playoff.

Webb Simpson

Simpson with his wife at the US Open

That 10-year exemption really hits hard when you're Webb Simpson, who won the 2012 US Open at Olympic Club in San Francisco so played in the last of his exemptions last year.

The 37-year-old being absent means that winners of three tournaments in the space of four years will not be playing this year - showing how brutal it can be even for past champions who get no automatic route back into the event.

Harold Varner III

Harold Varner III with the LIV Golf trophy before the 2022 tournament in Jeddah

A recent LIV Golf winner in Washington DC, Harold Varner III looked the class in the field in qualifying as he went to North Carolina to try and play his way into the field in LA.

However, despite shooting 67-69 at Old Chatham Club he missed out by three shots and therefore misses his first Major since the 2021 US Open.

Lee Westwood

Lee Westwood takes a shot during a practice round before the 2023 Saudi International

It's not really headline news anymore for Lee Westwood who made no attempt to qualify and therefore due to joining LIV and sliding down the rankings never stood a chance of getting in.

The US Open is the Major the 50-year-old has played the fewest times out of the four, but he's still got five top-10 finishes including a pair of third places.

Ian Poulter

Ian Poulter looks on after hitting an iron shot

Ian Poulter made a failed bid to qualify for the Open in Hong Kong a few months back, but did not try and get into the US Open field this time around.

It's never really been the 47-year-old's favourite Major anyway, having a few problems with the crowds down the years and with it being his worst of the four results-wise.

Poulter made 11 cuts from 16 US Open appearances, but it was the only Major he failed to get a top 10 finish in, with his best being a T12 at Winged Foot in 2006.

Marc Leishman

Leishman stares on with a hat on

Australian Marc Leishman is another player who has fallen out of Major contention due to playing in LIV Golf and seeing his ranking slide.

The 39-year-old, a six-time PGA Tour winner, hadn't missed a Major since the 2015 Masters, but thanks to a second-round 74 in qualifying he missed out on a place by three shots.

Leishman has played in 44 Majors with six top 10s, none at the US Open, and came closest to winning win when losing out to Louis Oosthuizen in a playoff for the 2015 Open Championship at St Andrews.

Matthew Wolff

Matthew Wolff during the 2023 LIV Golf Mayakoba event

Matthew Wolff, he of the quirky swing, was one of golf's next big things as he burst onto the scene and claimed a PGA Tour victory in his rookie season - beating Bryson DeChambeau and Collin Morikawa at the 3M Championship.

He then finished second to DeChambeau in the 2020 US Open and also had a T4 in the PGA Championship that year and looked primed to be a Major contender for years.

Injuries followed before a move to LIV Golf hasn't exactly gone to plan, with talk of him leaving Brooks Koepka's Smash GC and looking for a trade as he deals with another injury - one which forced him to withdraw from US Open qualifying before hitting a ball.