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Min Woo Lee won't 'moan' about missing signature events

The PGA Tour's eight "signature events" introduced for the 2024 season have drawn the ire of numerous veteran players who have missed out on the limited-field events featuring $US20 million purses.

Min Woo Lee has a different perspective: play better.

The affable 25-year-old Australian has been ranked as high as No.31 in the world this year. He made the cut at The Players Championship, before posting top-26 finishes at each of the year's first three majors.

But he played in just one of the eight signature events, finishing in a tie for 44th at the Arnold Palmer Invitational in March.

The final signature event was this past weekend's Travelers Championship.

"I think it's great that the PGA Tour is doing that," Lee said when asked about his stance on the signature events.

"I'm not the one to moan about it, but I guess I played every major, which is awesome and amazing. I played into them. To not play most of the signature events, it was kind of hard to take a little bit.''

Despite making 11 of 12 cuts so far in 2024, Lee has only one top-20 finish - runner-up at the Cognizant Classic.

He does have a string of five consecutive finishes between T21 and T26, and arrived at this week's Rocket Mortgage Classic ranked 64th in the FedEx Cup Standings.

That puts Lee on the outside looking in of the coveted top 50 spots that get guaranteed places in next year's signature events.

The difficulty of earning spots into those events, along with five of them being no-cut events and the other three allowing for a handful of sponsors' exemptions, has generated significant backlash among the tour's rank-and-file.

PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan said recently that the qualification guidelines are constantly being reviewed, but also lauded the ability of players to earn their way into signature events via the Aon Swing 5 and the Aon Next 10.

While admittedly disappointed to have missed out on all but two signature events this season, Lee is in Detroit for the first time this week to continue his quest to get into that top 50.

"I know I've got to play better and make the cut-off line at the end of the year and get to play next year," he said.

"I think it's great. We all try to play those big events and, yeah, obviously it's a new thing and all of us are trying to get into those events."

It's a critical stretch of golf for Lee, who is also trying to qualify for his first Presidents Cup team.

"It would be massive. I felt like I missed out last year by a small margin, and I'm really excited this year," he said. "I've been playing a lot better since not making that team last year, or two years ago.

"I know the American team is very strong and we've got to play very well to beat them. Especially a team aspect, I really love playing match play, and just being with a partner is cool."