In my mind, both should have been announced last week, but nonetheless, the RCGA decided yesterday to extend invitations to both amateur Victor Ciesielski and Natioinwide Tour player Brad Fritsch.
The additions of Fritsch and Ciesielski bring the number of Canadians in the field at Angus Glen to 19.
It will be the most since 20 played at Glen Abbey in 1998.
Fritsch was a natural selection. The 29-year-old from Manotick, Ont., is a Nationwide Tour rookie and was notably absent from the original group of exemptions because each of the other six other Canadian players on that tour – including Mills – was extended an invite.
Ciesielski was a tougher choice, but his inclusion in the field should be a popular choice for a couple reasons. The 22-year-old from Cambridge, Ont., was one of the top story’s at Hamilton Golf and Country Club last year after he got through Monday qualifying and made a hole-in-one in the second round.
My only comment is in Fritsch. Canada doesn’t have that many world class players — guys playing Nationwide or European Tour, for instance — that the RCGA could simply overlook one of them based on the fact he isn’t playing that well on the Nationwide. By just getting to the Nationwide, he should have been extended an exemption, just like all of the other Canadians playing at that level. In the end it took the withdrawal of Jon Mills (who wants to play in the Nationwide Tour event that runs against the Canadian Open) for Fritsch and Ciesielski to get their invites.