Parry miffed at missing the party
SOMETIMES, the trouble with throwing a big party is deciding who not to invite. It is no different at the Masters.
Even with several specific qualifying methods, the Masters is otherwise a private party by Augusta National Golf Club for whomever it pleases. The limited number of special invitations are highly prized.
New Zealand's Michael Campbell received one. Australia's Craig Parry thought he should have, but did not.
"We reviewed all the players and he was not one of the players to whom we extended an invitation," said Augusta golf chairman Will Nicholson.
Parry was 46th on last year's US tour money list. He led the 1995 Australian Order of Merit and in the past four months has won Greg Norman's Holden Classic and a third Australian Masters crown. Campbell was 21st at this year's Australian Masters.
But Parry plays on the United States tour most of the year and Augusta's golf lords rarely give special treatment to such players. The expectation is they will earn their place here by winning an event or finishing in the top 30.
That would force Parry to skip the early year events in his homeland, tournaments vital to the Australian tour, to ensure a spot here.
"I don't think Australians get much of a break at all," said Parry. "I get crucified for supporting my home tour. It's crazy.