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Tuesday, 12 June 2012
Paul Casey  (Getty Images)
Paul Casey (Getty Images)

Paul Casey has been forced to withdraw from the 2012 US Open Championship with a recurrence of his shoulder injury.

He will be replaced by Andy Zhang, a 14 year old amateur from Reunion, Florida, who will become the youngest player to compete in the US Open in the post war era.

"You're always disappointed to miss time due to injury but it's especially true when you have to withdraw from the US Open," said Casey. "I've been trying to play my way back from my shoulder injury, and I feel like I probably came back too soon originally and it's affecting my ability right now to be ready for the test of a Major. I do feel like I'm very nearly ready but not quite ready for this week."

Zhang, born on December 14, 1997, competed in sectional qualifying at Black Diamond Ranch (Quarry Course) at Lecanto, Florida. on June 4, shooting rounds of 70, 72 for a total of 142 to earn first alternate position.

Zhang, who is originally from the People’s Republic of China, will become the youngest to play in a US Open since World War II. Tadd Fujikawa previously held that distinction; he was 15 at the 2006 Open at Winged Foot Golf Club 

Earlier this year China's Guan Tian-lang became the youngest player to compete on The European Tour when he teed up  in the Volvo China Open aged13 years 173 days. And just last weekend Feng Shanshan became the first Chinese golfer to win a Major when she won the the LPGA Championship.

Zhang will tee off at 8:21 a.m. PDT on Thursday from the 1st tee with Hiroyuki Fujita and Mark Wilson.

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