For Mark Calcavecchia, the British Open provides an annual opportunity to compete against the world's top players.

The 54-year-old former PGA tour member now competes primarily on the over-50 Champions Tour, but because he won the British Open in 1989, he qualifies for an automatic spot in the tournament each year until he turns 60.

But this year Calcavecchia won't be making an appearance at Royal Liverpool, and for that he's blaming American Airlines.

Calcavecchia didn't make the cut last year, but he finished tied for ninth in 2012.

Taking Calcavecchia's spot will be Canadian David Hearn, who will play the first two rounds with former Open champions Nick Faldo and Todd Hamilton. Calcavecchia graciously congratulated Hearn on his opportunity, which will be Hearn's first British Open appearance: